Welfare drug testing bill advances

By: AP
By: AP

TALLAHASSEE -- New applicants for one form of welfare assistance would have to get drug tests at their own expense under a bill advancing in the Florida Legislature.

The Senate version won approval from a budget subcommittee Wednesday on 5-2 party line vote. Republicans voted in favor and Democrats against.

Sen. Steve Oelrich is sponsoring the bill (SB 556). The Alachua Republican said it's only fair for welfare recipients to get drug tested because many taxpayers are screened by their employers.

Senate Democratic Leader Nan Rich said it would be unfair to make poor people pay for drug tests. The Weston lawmaker also cited a national study showing little difference in drug use between welfare recipients and other people.

A Senate staff analysis says testing can cost up to $35.


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  • by Kay Location: Al. on May 2, 2011 at 07:25 PM
    All need to be tested,not just new applicants.I agree with you Chantie,get you lazy butts off the system and go to work,thats not going to happen though,If i had a govenment money tree at my back door,go out and pick as much as i wanted each month off it each month. People have no quality in life any more.I just hope all states will do this and not wait 30 years to pass the law!!!
  • by Chantie Huffines on Apr 13, 2011 at 10:59 PM
    I think everyone who gets any kind of government aid (welfare, food stamps, TANF, AFDC, ect.) needs to be tested for drugs in order to be approved for it and be tested randomly while on it. If you get a job, you either have to take a drug test before you get hired, or you have to sign a paper where you agree to allow the company to required a periodic drug test on you. Why should the welfare system be any different? I know a few people on welfare that spend their welfare money on drugs and alcohol. I also think that Every state should put into law the same law that Oklahoma has. In Oklahoma you can only be AFDC, TANF, or welfare for 2 years total throughout your life. That right there would force many people that can work, to get up off their butts and get a job instead of forcing us taxpayers to support their lazy butts.
  • by AL Location: FL on Apr 13, 2011 at 10:04 AM
    "New applicants for one form of welfare assistance would have to get drug tests" **Why only the new applicants, and why only the one form of welfare assistance are to be tested??** "Republicans voted in favor and Democrats against." **The Democrats just love their entitlement programs, the vote shows this clear as day!!**
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