Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the City Council are urging Congress to make changes to food stamp programs, not cuts.
Reductions to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, are part of the farm bill being debated in Congress.
But in a letter to lawmakers, Bloomberg said a better way to cut costs would be to limit the amount of sugary drinks that could be bought under the program.
The mayor also said lawmakers should focus on fighting fraud.
The City Council also weighed in with a letter from Speaker and candidate for mayor Christine Quinn.
She said cuts to the program would hurt the city's economy and prevent the city's poorest children from eating a balanced diet.
President Obama says he will veto any food-stamp cuts that come across his desk.