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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: June 5, 2017 12:11 PM
From: Representative Michael N. Corr
To: All House members
Subject: Welfare Reform - Deceased Collecting Benefits
Over $3.4 billion of welfare benefits are distributed by the Department of Human Services on Electronic Benefits Transfer or ACCESS cards. Last year, we received a report from the Auditor General indicating more than 2,000 deceased people collected welfare benefits over a 12-month period. The total cost of those benefits was $693,161.

With every budget dollar under exceptional scrutiny, there are individuals and families that need assistance. However, the Auditor General's report has proven to all of us that those dollars are not always getting in the hands of those who need it most. In order to ensure integrity to our welfare system, I will be introducing legislation that requires the Department of Human Services to cross-reference the roster of welfare recipients with the death records maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Social Security Administration. A recipient who is found to have a death record shall be subject to immediate cancelation of benefits, including the deactivation of their benefit card upon certificate of that identity.

The report issued by the Auditor General only provided a glimpse of a one-year time period. No one knows for certain how many taxpayer dollars have been fraudulently spent by a fraudulent benefit card user over the years. It is time this practice comes to an immediate end.

Please join me in cosponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as HB1614