Lawmakers Supporting Department's Push to Ensure Temporary Assistance is Helping Families

For Immediate Release:
April 5, 2013

Contact:
Joe Follick
Communications Director
(850) 413-0771

Lawmakers Supporting Department's Push to Ensure Temporary Assistance is Helping Families

TALLAHASSEE – On Thursday, the House Health & Human Services Committee approved House Bill 701 which eliminates access to public assistance funds at liquor stores, adult entertainment establishments, internet cafes, and other gambling establishments. HB 701, sponsored by Representative Jimmie Smith, has been approved by three House committees and is ready for a vote by the full House.

The Senate companion – SB 1048 sponsored by Sen. Andy Gardiner – has been unanimously approved by one committee and is scheduled for a vote next week in the Senate Committee on Children, Families and Elder Affairs.

"This is another step in our Department's efforts to let taxpayers know their money is being used wisely and effectively," said Department of Children & Families Secretary David Wilkins. "Temporary cash assistance withdrawn at these locations is not being used for its intended purpose which is to help families become independent and self-sufficient."

Last year, the federal government allowed Florida and other states to pass legislation prohibiting adult entertainment establishments, pari-mutuel facilities, casinos, gaming facilities, internet cafes, commercial bingo facilities, and liquor stores from accepting state cash benefits via EBT cards.

For more information on the Department's oversight of this federal program, go to www.myflfamilies.com/service-programs/access-florida-food-medical-assist....

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