Minnesota Republicans are pushing legislation that would make it a crime for people on public assistance to have more $20 in cash in their pockets any given month. This represents a change from their initial proposal, which banned them from having any money at all.I haven't read House File 171, but this seems a little over the top, even for Republicans. That said, I understand the need to do something about those who abuse the public assistance program, and quite frankly, make it that much harder for those truly in need to receive assistance.
People who receive assistance currently receive their benefits through a EBT debit card. I'm not sure if the card can be used like a bank card (aka Visa), but with the right embedded technology, to prevent liquor store purchases and disallow the benefactor from using the card outside a radius of their home city, there would be no need for the recipient to have an over abundance of cash that could be used in the underground economy (aka drug dealers).
If you've paid any attention to this blog, or our show, you know that I think we have an obligation to help the needy. That said, those who are being helped have an obligation to the taxpayers who are paying the freight.
We will cover this more in depth, this Saturday at noon, CDT.