Ga. welfare recipients would get new requirements

Lawmakers wants them to have 'personal growth activities'

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ATLANTA -- Anyone getting welfare would have to “engage in personal growth activities” if legislation introduced by a freshman senator becomes law.

Sen. William Ligon, R-Brunswick, introduced Senate Bill 312 along with Sens. Buddy Carter of Pooler and John Albers of Roswell and Senate President Pro Tempore Tommie Williams of Lyons. All are Republicans.

The requirement would apply to anyone getting food stamps or Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, both federally funded programs for the poor administered by the state.

Under the bill, qualifying activities include working toward a diploma or technical education, learning to read or “attending self-development classes.”

“We’re trying to equip them to obtain better-paying jobs,” Ligon said.

He is also lobbying to use unclaimed prize money from the Georgia Lottery to fund additional training.

The disabled and anyone who already works 40 hours a week would be exempt. And the commissioner of human services could exempt anyone else if the requirements would be “oppressive,” according to the bill.

Advocates for the poor said Thursday they’re concerned.

“The assumption is they’re not skilled,” said Rep. Virgil Fludd, D-Tyrone, chairman of the Georgia Working Families Legislative Caucus. “To me, we ought to be focusing on the real problem: creating new jobs.”

Sen. Nan Orrock, D-Atlanta, co-chair of the caucus, said federal guidelines for both programs may prohibit states from adding requirements on the beneficiaries.

The Senate Health and Human Services Committee will consider the bill.

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Chillen 01/27/12 - 10:19 am
Good luck with this. There

Good luck with this.

There will be howls of "unfairness" from the left and aggressive resistance from the moochers. It will probably cost more to police the program and browbeat them to go to the classes than it does to just give them the money.

GaStang22 01/27/12 - 10:20 am
Another pathetic "just for

Another pathetic "just for looks" attempt at controlling those with their hand out. NOT a real solution or even help!!! "Opressive" lol how many will milk that loophole?? Many of those "disabled", "oppressed", and just in general people with their hand out are just lazy and the government pays them more to do nothing than to actually work, and they get pay raises for breeding. You can't force a lazy person to be self supporting when the government encourages and enables them to stay lazy!!!!

Patty-P 01/27/12 - 02:35 pm


Sweet son
Sweet son 01/27/12 - 03:05 pm
Random drug screens should be

Random drug screens should be a part of this 'program.' Wonder how many food stamp cards are traded for drugs?

specsta 01/27/12 - 05:10 pm
Republicans proposing another

Republicans proposing another measure by which the poor must prove their worthiness? I'm shocked!

I would imagine that the counterpart to this measure would be some sort of additional welfare (tax breaks and subsidies) for the wealthy - with no conditions attached.

That's the Republican way of life - hate the poor and worship the rich.

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