Sheriffs Join Legislative Leaders in Support of Governor’s Proposal to Remove Deputies from Eligibility of Food Stamps

In today’s meeting of the joint money committees, Governor Terry McAuliffe released a budget proposal that removes deputy sheriffs from eligibility of food stamps. The Governor’s budget proposal provides for salary adjustments sufficient to bring the lowest paid deputy sheriffs salaries above the threshold of being eligible for food stamps for a family of four.

The Virginia Sheriffs’ Association applauds the efforts of Governor McAuliffe to address this critical issue. Deputy sheriffs provide the first line of public safety across Virginia as the primary law enforcement first responders in 86 Virginia counties, run Virginia’s local jails, provide security in all of Virginia’s courts, and serve civil and criminal process necessary to carry out Virginia’s judicial functions.

Lunenburg County Sheriff Arthur Townsend, President of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association, said in support of Governor McAuliffe’s efforts, “It is unacceptable that sheriff’s deputies qualify for food stamps, and I appreciate Governor McAuliffe’s recognition of the vital role sheriff’s offices play in the criminal justice system.”

State Senator Jill Vogel (R-27), joined legislative leaders in support of the Governor’s deputy sheriff proposal, adding, “This is a major step forward, and I plan to work closely with my colleagues to review and consider this important proposal.”

Delegate Charles Poindexter (R-9) added, “This proposal addresses a critical need in my district, and I look forward to working with the members of the House Appropriations Committee on this as we move into the legislative process.”

John W. Jones, Executive Director of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association, said, “I know sheriffs across Virginia will be working hard with their members of the General Assembly to ensure passage of this important and historic proposal. This was a promise made by Governor McAuliffe during the campaign that is critical to attracting and keeping professional deputy sheriffs.”

The General Assembly will take up this proposal when the session begins in January.

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