LANSING (WWJ/AP) – Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed laws to block welfare recipients from withdrawing their taxpayer-provided cash from ATMs in liquor stores, horse tracks and strip clubs.
Under federal law, states that don’t restrict welfare recipients’ ability to conduct electronic transfers at liquor stores, casinos or adult entertainment establishments could lose up to 5 percent of their federal welfare funding.
The six bills were sponsored by Republican Sen. Rick Jones of Grand Ledge along with Republican Reps. Margaret O’Brien of Portage and Dale Zorn of Ida.
Jones (R-Grand Ledge) said the bill was a natural followup to a similar law, passed in 2012, that prevents cash withdrawals inside casinos. He cautioned that Michigan risked forfeiting $40,000 in TANF [Temporary Assistance for Needy Families federal] grant money.
Republican Rep. Dale Zorn of Ida says welfare is to help people get back on their feet, “not kicking back at adult entertainment venues.”
Those opposed to the bills were concerned that such laws may prevent card users from using ATMs at corner stores in urban neighborhoods where ATMs are scarce.
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