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2/20/2014 Kettle introduced bill to combat food stamp fraud
 STATE HOUSE – In an effort to reduce fraud within the state’s food stamp program, Senator Nicholas D. Kettle, (R-Dist. 21, Coventry, Foster, Scituate, West Greenwich), introduced legislation that would require anyone using an electronic benefits card to show photo identification.

“There are many people in our state that genuinely need these benefits,” Kettle, the bill’s prime sponsor, said.  “People who try and defraud the food stamp program are stealing money from those who need EBT cards to keep from going hungry.”

Senate bill 2014-S 2382 would require retailers examine a photo ID to verify that a buyer presenting an EBT card is the person entitled to use the card.  Additionally, any retailer who neglects to verify eligibility will be suspended from the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) program for one month.

 “The bill is a much-needed tool to provide effective oversight of the SNAP program,” said Sen. Marc Cote, (D-Dist. 24, North Smithfield, Woonsocket) a member of a bipartisan Senate coalition supporting the bill.  “We must do all that we can to make sure that the benefits go to qualified recipients and that taxpayer dollars spent appropriately” said Sen. Cote.

The bill was also co-sponsored by Sen. Edward J. O’Neill (I-Dist. 17) and Sen. Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-Dist. 33).  It now goes before the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration.

For more information, contact:
Katie Haughey Cardoza, Senate Minority Office
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903
(401) 222-2708