EBT card problem has local impact

Travis Highfield/ Staff
Sign posted on the door of the 15th Street Kroger Saturday alerts customers of the EBT problem
Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013 2:51 PM
Last updated Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013 10:15 AM
  • Follow Latest News

The electronic system that allows welfare recipients to buy food with their benefits went down across Georgia and elsewhere on Saturday, including at stores in Augusta.
The Electronic Benefits Transfer system that lets people spend their Supplemental Nutrition Assistant Program benefits with payment cards was reportedly repaired late Saturday.

The effects of the EBT outage -- blamed on a technical problem that had nothing to do with the government shudown -- were felt in Augusta on Saturday, as some welfare recipients feared they would not be able to eat for a night.

Angelo Bates, 41, said he rode his bike more than two miles to Kroger on 15th Street before stopping short at the doors. Taped to the door was a neon pink sign that read, “Our EBT system is currently down!”

“I don’t believe it,” Bates said. “I came down here to get some groceries, but now I might have to go a day without eating.”

Bates said he makes the trip to Kroger at least once a week. He said the money on his EBT card is important because he has no other way to pay for food, he said.

“There are a lot of people out there who need that money,” he said. “I don’t spend it on anything else except for groceries. I guess it’s just one of those things. I don’t know what to do in the meantime.”

Easter Davis, 68, of Augusta, pushed an empty cart up to the store before she saw the sign. She said she walked more than three miles to the store to pick up groceries for the next two weeks.

She has been using an EBT card for more than four years and usually spends about $250 each trip, she said.

“I had no idea there was a problem,” she said. “I’ve never had something like this happen before. I don’t have much of a choice except to wait it out.”

Comments (47) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 10/13/13 - 08:29 am
6
3
"There is no one on SNAP
Unpublished

"There is no one on SNAP driving a luxury car or eating Kobe beef."
specsta, I am not sure if you just make things as you go or badly misinformed. The other day a lady with 4 kids checked out in front of me at Wal-Mart. She paid for 95% of buggy full groceries with a EBT card and cash for items that is not allowed on the EBT. I saw her loading her groceries in new looking Lincoln SUV.

I'm Back Again
307
Points
I'm Back Again 10/13/13 - 10:04 am
0
0
Get a job. Period. It's funny
Unpublished

Get a job. Period. It's funny that the AC interviewed a guy riding a bike and a lady that walked 3 miles. Why didn't you interview someone who pulled up in a car and has a job and ask them how they are effected while the EBT system is down?

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 10/13/13 - 10:21 am
1
0
Recipients are not "vetted". That would be racist. The system.
Unpublished

Recipients are not "vetted". That would be racist. The system.

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 10/13/13 - 10:22 am
1
0
And who would do the "vetting"? A lazy. obese bureaucrat?
Unpublished

And who would do the "vetting"? A lazy. obese bureaucrat?

TrukinRanger
1748
Points
TrukinRanger 10/13/13 - 10:23 am
0
0
I'm just skipping to the
Unpublished

I'm just skipping to the bottom and posting. YES there are deadbeats in the system but there are plenty of people who cannot buy the essentials to survive. Who has the plan, time, energy to keep investigating each and every one of them to see who brought pre-cooked crablegs? (Which is how most crablegs come now). If you take the money that we are giving the poor to help eat and compare it to the money the government gives to corporations in various forms - the corporations get a higher percentage handout. Let's cut their welfare off... perhaps make their CEO's only have a $10M bonus instead of $20M.

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 10/13/13 - 10:26 am
0
0
Hope she did not buy cold or frozen items? A four mile walk?
Unpublished

Hope she did not buy cold or frozen items? A four mile walk?

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 10/13/13 - 10:30 am
1
0
And the culture believes the government "loves them". Plantation
Unpublished

mentality is alive and well. Plantation Mentality is one level up from Reservation Mentality. Both include unlimited high fructose sodas, snacks, obesity, starches, diabetes and freedom from work related activities.

ragingbull
945
Points
ragingbull 10/13/13 - 11:13 am
2
0
I agree with an earlier

I agree with an earlier comment that those who rely on EBT do not have to worry about budgeting their money because they know they are being supported by "deep pockets government" and it comes in automatically. If you do not believe me, go to a convenience store and stand around a little while. It will become obvious that those who purchase a large amount of lottery tickets are not depending on a job for an income to provide basic necessities like food and clothing. I am a vendor for a major snack food company and I see it everyday.

LillyfromtheMills
13318
Points
LillyfromtheMills 10/13/13 - 11:23 am
5
2
What happened to pride?

They have none.

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 11:28 am
4
1
specsta @ 7:51

"Most recipients are surviving on about $4.50/day for food. Most other folks would have no idea how to survive on that amount, but millions of Americans have no other choice. Most recipients are children"

With all due respect, I am a moderate liberal AND EVEN I can not back you up on this comment!! You want me to believe that there are tens of millions of people who NEED TO BE ON welfare, food stamps, and Medicaid!! These are the very people who are returning NOTHING to the tax payers and driveing the national debt up, up, and up!! Why on Earth do people like you believe that the tax payer should continue, "BLINDLY", to support these people with out ANYTHING in return??!!

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 11:30 am
2
0
Ragingbull @ 11:13

"I agree with an earlier comment that those who rely on EBT do not have to worry about budgeting their money because they know they are being supported by "deep pockets government" and it comes in automatically"

VERY ACCURATE!!

Darby
25819
Points
Darby 10/13/13 - 11:32 am
4
1
"There are people with well-paying jobs who are irresponsible wh

it comes to purchases. Maybe all their money is spent by the weekend, on booze and cigarettes or gambling."

.
And what business is it of yours how someone with a "well paying job", (your words, not mine) spend THEIR MONEY?

Did they not earn it? Or is it your contention, as it is OzBama's, that ALL money belongs to the state and therefore is fair game for redistribution?

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 11:36 am
2
0
chascushman @ 8:29

"The other day a lady with 4 kids checked out in front of me at Wal-Mart"

This statement, in and of itself, containes one more of the factors of EBT. With all due respect to kids, the parents have GONE TOTALLY off of ANY responsibility for taking care of the family which they chose to have!!

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 11:42 am
3
0
Comment

It was one of the articals in today's paper that told of a woman who walked 3 miles to get to the store and found that she could not use her EBT card. She told the reporter that she typically bought $250 per every two weeks!! I have a family of three, and we only average $150 per every two weeks, AND THAT IS with one BOX of cheap wine every two weeks!!

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 11:54 am
1
1
Darby @ 9:17

"The rest of those deadbeats can kiss my grits. They are just being paid in advance to vote Democrat"

I have to take issue with you on this one. This problem has been getting worse over the last 3 decades or more! Granted, the problem has gotten worse under President Obama AND The First Lady. School lunches for free has gone through the roof!! I still believe that people are going to vote their convictions.

allhans
23704
Points
allhans 10/13/13 - 12:30 pm
0
0
I doubt there are many who

I doubt there were many who didn't have food in the house for another meal or two.
Let us hope the system is now back up and running.

t3bledsoe
14290
Points
t3bledsoe 10/13/13 - 12:06 pm
2
1
specsta @ 12:32 AM

"Individuals are given approximately $4.50 day to eat"

I truly believe that ICL's math is better than yours.

Darby
25819
Points
Darby 10/13/13 - 12:21 pm
3
0
"I still believe that people are going to

vote their convictions"

.
And their convictions tell them that they will get more goodies from Democrats than from Republicans. They are right!

As for things getting worse. Only the perception is worse, by design..

Trouble is, with politics, the old saying is... "Perception is reality".

The truth is always a casualty to collateral damage.

OJP
6673
Points
OJP 10/13/13 - 01:03 pm
0
1
You choose

Everyone who deserves food stamps gets them with some abusers or not everyone who deserves food stamps gets them without any abusers.

I choose the former, and cannot understand anyone who would choose the latter (particularly when those who do seem so often to claim piety).

just an opinion
2638
Points
just an opinion 10/13/13 - 02:06 pm
1
1
It will be a joy to eat lunch tomorrow

The Blimpie line will be much shorter. I always know when an EBT card is about to be used. It's followed by the heavy mayonnaise request and the thug waiting in the shadows.

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 10/13/13 - 02:28 pm
1
1
"I always know when an EBT
Unpublished

"I always know when an EBT card is about to be used."
I have notice that a very large % of the people using EBT cards are way over weight.

oldredneckman96
5095
Points
oldredneckman96 10/13/13 - 02:36 pm
2
0
Short term thinking
Unpublished

The short-term thinking that would cause a person to go hungry after less than 24 hours without support is one reason for their need for assistance in the first place. Perhaps we need to supply these folks with the groceries they need instead of money.

specsta
6505
Points
specsta 10/13/13 - 04:15 pm
1
1
You Could Be The One In Need

I am trying to figure out why there is so much animosity toward citizens who have little or no income and must utilize government assistance to eat a meal. Why so much hatred?

Our US military can waste billions on equipment and no one complains. Corporations receive billions of dollars in subsidies and incentives and no one complains. Privately-owned prisons makes huge profits from the caging of non-violent human beings and no one complains. CEO's makes millions while the worker on the factory floor makes a pittance and no one complains.

A poor mother or father tries to eat a decent meal and feed their kids - and the HATE spews forth.

What is WRONG with people??? Yes, you might have a good job, some benefits, drive a decent car, have a few dollars in the bank, and have a nice house. And that is supposed to put someone in a position where they demand that only those who are well-off, be able to EAT???

Everybody doesn't live the good life. Everybody doesn't have the same opportunities. Some folks were born disabled. Some folks suffered under abusive parents. Some folks have been sick all their lives. Some folks did not receive a decent education. Some folks lost jobs and can't find another job.

So, instead of being grateful that there is somewhat of a safety net for those individuals, the hate-filled folks complain that the poor and needy are taking money from those who are doing okay. This is characteristic of a selfish society orchestrated by greed.

Sick? Tough. Homeless? Don't ask for money. Hungry? It's your own fault. Jobless? Stop being lazy. These are the conversations that run through the mind of the hate-filled individual. I got mine, I want to keep mine, and if you are poor or sick or jobless or homeless, I don't care. I only care about me.

So our American society continues down the path of a War on the Poor, instead of a War on Poverty. And no one wins.

Stunned 2
4366
Points
Stunned 2 10/13/13 - 07:52 pm
0
0
Noone should become dependent on handouts.

Noone should become dependent on handouts

Darby
25819
Points
Darby 10/14/13 - 01:47 am
1
1
I am trying to figure out why there is so much animosity toward

citizens who have little or no income and must utilize government assistance to eat a meal. Why so much hatred?

.
How do you define hatred? The facts are that the vast majority of those on EBT are leaches, parasites and moochers. You have no political choice as a liberal but to convince yourself that they are "citizens" in need. Many are not even "citizens" to begin with.

The truth is all you need to do is open your eyes and see that the vast majority are gaming the system and the so-called "entitlement" program is on the verge of destroying the American economy.

I seriously believe that you could look for the rest of your life and not find a single soul who does not sympathize and empathize with those who are down on their luck. Those who truly need help can and should get it until they are able to stand on their own feet. The rest need to be kicked to the curb.

The animosity has been created by the abusers. If you weren't driven by political expediency you'd see that!

In the meantime, the "golden egg" that has been the Democrat's strategy for winning elections since the 1960's is killing the goose that laid it.

Darby
25819
Points
Darby 10/14/13 - 12:15 pm
1
0
The following SHOULD closes the deal for

the defendants of the EBT deadbeats, leaches, parasites and moochers, but you know it won't. At one Wal-Mart yesterday it was decided to accept EBT cards even though the system was shut down.

People were trusted to honor and not to abuse the system. The shelves were soon striped bare.

From 7 to 9 p.m., people were loading up their carts, but when the cards began showing limits again around 9, one woman was detained because she rang up a bill of $700.00 and only had .49 on her card. She was held by police until corporate Walmart said they wouldn't press charges if she left the food.

No mention of the moochers who got out the front door with even more loot. So much for "honor" and "trust".

Our "progressives" will see that as just a way of "getting back" what the "system" (and the evil Wal-Mart) has taken from the "poor".

Anyone with half a brain will see it for just what it is. THEFT!

And those who pay taxes shoulder the burden.

Back to Top

Search Augusta jobs