Kansas to Ban Use of Welfare on Tattoos, Cruises, Psychics

Alexandra Jaffe, CNN, April 7, 2015

Kansas is poised to put a stop to the practice of welfare recipients using government aid to pay for psychics with a bill that cracks down on the use of welfare for fun.

It aims to encourage those receiving government aid under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program to spend “more responsibly,” as Kansas state Sen. Michael O’Donnell told the Topeka Capital-Journal.

“We’re trying to make sure those benefits are used the way they were intended,” O’Donnell, vice chair of the state senate’s standing committee on public health and welfare, said. “This is about prosperity. This is about having a great life.”

Having a great life, per the bill, means that welfare recipients cannot spend their government aid on body piercings, massages, spas, tobacco, nail salons, lingerie, arcades, cruise ships or visits to psychics.

The bill also forbids spending the funds at theme parks, dog or horse racing tracks, a “sexually oriented business or any retail establishment which provides adult-oriented entertainment in which performers disrobe or perform in an unclothed state for entertainment, or in any business or retail establishment where minors under age 18 are not permitted.”

And it limits cash withdrawals of the funds to $25 a day, an attempt to prevent recipients from using their funds on inappropriate expenditures.

It passed last week with large support from Republican majorities in the House and Senate, and Gov. Sam Brownback is expected to sign it, though his spokeswoman has said he’ll consider it carefully. {snip}


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