ST. PAUL  (AP) -- A minor spending cut in a sprawling Senate health and welfare bill threatens home-delivered meals for thousands of poor senior citizens and could result in lost federal dollars.

The proposal from Republican Sen. David Hann of Eden Prairie would cut $2.68 million from senior nutrition program grants, costing Minnesota another $1.9 million in federal funds.

The grants help feed 70,000 seniors through Meals on Wheels programs and group dining in large senior housing facilities.

Jean Wood, an official with the state Human Services Department, says 3,700 people would lose home-delivered meals if the cuts were applied only to that service.

The health and welfare bill would reduce state spending by $1.6 billion over two years. The full Senate is expected to vote on the bill this week.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)