The state of Kansas is cracking down on welfare recipients. In addition to the number of stipulations put in place for candidates to meet the qualifications to receive welfare benefits, the state is also incorporating another stipulation to monitor how benefits are spent.
According to the Huffington Post, the new bill known as House Bill 2258 has been incorporated for those who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits. For those who aren’t familiar with the benefit, it s considered a temporary form of income for impoverished families. The benefit, commonly referred to as “welfare,” allows recipients who meet the qualification to receive the supplemental income for a maximum of 24 months.
The Kansas “Successful Families Program” outline states that the maximum a family of four could receive is approximately $497 each month, with an additional $61 for each additional person. Now, state officials are proposing that the meager amount only be utilized by adhering to a number of restrictions.
The proposed bill will restrict welfare recipients from obtaining more than $25 in cash each day. It has also been reported that the new spending restrictions will also prohibit recipients from using their benefits for certain expenditures. Specifically, benefits can no longer be used at liquor stores, nail shops, hair salons, tattoo parlors, day spas, masseuses, swimming facilities, and on board cruise ships, reports Raw Story. Welfare recipients must also enjoy fortune telling in the state of Kansas, because benefits can no longer be used for psychic services and fortune telling.
“We’re trying to make sure those benefits are used the way they were intended,” state Rep. Michael O’Donnell (R) said, according to the Topeka Capital-Journal. “This is about prosperity. This is about having a great life.”
During Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s first term the number of TANF recipients declined drastically with 38,900 in 2011 to 17,600 in 2014, reports Hutch News. Now, the state is expecting the number of recipients to decline yet again.
“We pat ourselves on the back that our TANF rolls have gone down exponentially and we say it’s because all those people are now working. We don’t know that and I’m guessing its not the truth,” said Sen. Laura Kelly, D-Topeka. “Now what we want to do is take the same mean-spirited policies that we’ve implemented over the years and we want to codify them,” she said. “I can only assume that the motive behind this is truly malice of intent.”
It has been reported that Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback will be signing off on the new bill on Monday, April 6. The final Senate vote on the proposed bill is scheduled for Thursday, April 9. However, it has sparked quite a debate online. While some readers feel the staggering number of restrictions are a bit extreme, others feel the restrictions are quite necessary to reduce cases of misappropriated funds.
Do you think the new stipulations are necessary or a bit extreme? Share your thoughts.
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