Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Proposed bill would ban use of welfare money at casinos, strip clubs and liquor stores

Posted By on Tue, Mar 5, 2013 at 10:32 AM

New restrictions might come to EBT cards.
  • New restrictions might come to EBT cards.
A bill proposed by Lee's Summit Sen. Will Kraus and University City Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal would bar the use of welfare benefit cards at a variety of businesses including casinos, strip clubs, liquor stores and sporting events. In related news, people on welfare used to be able to use their benefit cards at casinos, strip clubs, liquor stores and sporting events. The bill is a reaction to reports that popped up last year of recipients using their benefits at such places.

The lawmakers are calling the planned restrictions a compromise. Kraus originally wanted much stricter rules and photos of the recipients on their EBT cards. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch explains that state law prohibits the use of EBT cards at casinos, but the bill would go further by electronically blocking the cards' use at gambling halls.

Not surprisingly, nobody, nobody opposed the bill on Monday when it was presented to the Senate Judiciary and Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee. Chappelle-Nadal summarized the logic of the bill nicely to the P-D "These cards have been used in Las Vegas and on islands off the mainland. These funds are for those people who are in need - the most vulnerable. If it's one or two people (committing fraud), that's too many," she told the paper.

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