NY Looks to Restrict Welfare Spending on Alcohol, Strip Clubs

June 20, 2012 at 7:56 am (Benefits, Bill Perkins, Fraud, Integrity Act, Liquor Store, New York, Public Assistance, Strip Clubs, Thomas Libous, Welfare)

A bipartisan bill passed by a 56 – 3 vote in the New York Senate yesterday, seeks to curb spending by welfare recipients on such frivolous items as casino gambling, strip clubs, and lottery tickets, as well as limiting the money’s use for cigarettes and alcohol.

Via the Associated Press:

New York would prohibit welfare recipients from spending their tax-funded benefits on cigarettes, alcohol, gambling, and strip clubs under a bill passed overwhelmingly by the state Senate on Tuesday.

Ten other states have already ruled social services can’t be spent on items from beer to guns.

“I understand that people need food stamps,” said Republican Sen. Thomas Libous, a Broome County Republican. “What I don’t understand is why they need to go to strip clubs, buy lottery tickets, go to a ‘racino’ or buy alcohol.”

The “Public Assistance Integrity Act” would not allow the purchase of alcohol, tobacco, and lottery tickets with welfare payments, and would prohibit ATM withdrawals using the Electronic Benefits Transfer card at certain establishments such as liquor stores and strip clubs.

Sen. Bill Perkins (D-Harlem) voted against the measure saying, “It’s a prejudice, I think, about poor people that we are seeing represented more than any statistical or study of behavior”.

Perhaps it would aid the poor in limiting their use of public assistance on things such as lottery tickets and strip clubs that will only serve to continue their financial distress?

Perkins added, “the bill would penalize a poor mother who simply withdrew money to buy milk if she used an ATM in a banned establishment to do so.”

If you can’t find an ATM other than the one at a place called Shenanigan’s to get your milk, then you’re not really fit to receive monetary benefits of any kind.

What say you?

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CSEA Spokesman: "Public Doesn’t Have a Clue" About Union Healthcare Costs

June 8, 2012 at 7:51 am (Benefits, Chuck Custer, CSEA, Healthcare Costs, Kelly Lynch, New York, Steve Madarasz, Union, WGY)

Yesterday, Steve Madarasz, Communications Director for CSEA, joined the hosts of 810 WGY’s morning show to discuss the recall election in Wisconsin.

The interview started off with the pat union response for their defeat in Wisconsin – the election was bought.

Madarasz stated that, it’s “a very sad commentary on the role money plays in today’s political field”.

The premise is a false one, but one that those who supported the recall of Scott Walker have to make.  Otherwise, they would have to admit that the embarrassing defeat was a referendum on their policies and platforms, something they can’t seem to come to grips with.

Madarasz continued to push that theory, bitterly stating that campaign cash was the only reason that Walker was victorious.  But a report in the Wisconsin State Journal late last month indicates the contrary.  The results of that report state that an “analysis of the money that has flowed into all state campaigns and political groups since Walker took office suggests backers of the two major political parties have competed on an unusually level playing field.”

What was even more interesting perhaps was when host Chuck Custer asked Madarasz if he could understand the public’s frustration with union representatives fighting the call for greater contributions to healthcare costs, something more in line with the private sector.

Madarasz responded thusly:

“Oh we absolutely understand that.  We also understand that the public really doesn’t have a clue when it comes to the reality of what that’s all about.”  

Madarasz himself didn’t seem to have a clue what the question was all about, as evidenced by this exchange:

Madarasz:  “The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of our members do contribute to their health insurance and always have.”

Custer:  “But I mean as much as the average person?”

Madarasz:  “I think the sad commentary is that we have a real healthcare crisis in this country and part of this right-wing agenda that we’re seeing right now is going after the President on trying to have a plan that’s going to help people across the country.”

Nice use of the dodge right there.  Instead of addressing the issue of union members paying into their healthcare – the specific topic of the question – Madarasz went off on an Obamacare and ‘right-wing agenda’ tangent.

That said, this is another example of the union leaders having to avoid facts and instead provide falsehoods, or in this case, simply change the subject.

The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research released a report last year showing that public employees not only contribute far less to their health insurance premiums than the private sector – 15% as opposed to 25% on average – but that their plans also provide more generous benefits, and require lower deductibles and co-pays.

But then, the public wouldn’t have a clue about that.

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Dem: Unemployed Will Vote For Obama in Order to Keep Their Welfare Benefits

April 26, 2012 at 7:12 am (Al Sharpton, Benefits, Chaka Fattah, Democrat, Food Stamps, House Appropriations Commitee, President Obama, Unemployment, Welfare)

Maybe the unemployed should vote for Romney in order to have a shot at getting a paying job.

Via the Washington Examiner:

Rep. Chaka Fattah, D-Penn., explained last night how unemployment could actually encourage people to vote for President Obama in order to secure welfare benefits such as food stamps.
“Unemployment continues to drop and those people who are unemployed, they’re not going to be voting for the party who wants to cut their benefits — cut access to food stamps, cut job training,” Fattah, Senior Member of the House Appropriations Committee, told MSNBC’s Al Sharpton last night.

So, Obama ups the unemployment rate over 8%, watches 88 million people drop out of the workforce, and sits back as the votes roll in because those people no longer have to work to earn their money?

I’ve been wrong all along.  Obama is a genius.

Watch the video after the break…

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