New Welfare Rules Target High EBT Card Balances

July 10, 2013 3:49 PM
New Welfare Rules Target High EBT Card Balances
" BOSTON (AP) — Welfare recipients who accumulate high balances on their electronic benefit transfer cards will have those cards shut down under new state rules.

Cash assistance recipients with balances above $1,500 will be notified to see if they still need assistance, and EBT cards with balances exceeding $2,500 will be closed, Stacey Monahan, commissioner of the Department of Transitional Assistance, announced Wednesday. The move, she said, would ensure that only clients who truly need benefits receive them.

The DTA will also begin contacting recipients of the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program with balances greater than $5,000 to ensure they still need the benefits.

“The fact that some clients are accumulating high SNAP or cash balances is inconsistent with the department’s goal of helping vulnerable individuals meet their most basic and immediate needs, and that’s why we are taking this action,” said Monahan.

According to data provided by the state welfare agency for the month of March, about 83,000 households in Massachusetts received cash assistance and the average monthly benefit per household was $450 "

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