State Senate Kills Welfare Reform

A package of legislation aimed at cracking down on people abusing public aid, spearheaded by State Sen. Chapin Rose, was deep-sixed into subcommittee this week in the state Senate.

The package of three bills would have required drug testing for welfare, photo ID’s on Link cards (to prevent them for being traded for drugs, cash, or worse), and would have required the suspension of benefits for fugitives from justice. However, the ultra-liberal Senate Human Services Committee this week referred the package of welfare reform legislation into subcommittee – a move reserved for bills that the Democrat supermajority that controls the State Senate reserves for bills that it wants to insure never see the light of day.

“This package is designed to bring accountability back to the public aid rolls and save taxpayer dollars,” said Rose. “The first two bills deal directly with drug addiction by requiring welfare recipients to take drug tests as a condition of receiving benefits and the other requires the photo ID’s on the Link cards. If you think about it, handing a drug addict the means to perpetuate their addiction in the form of a Link card that is easily traded for drugs only enables their addiction.” 

The third initiative would immediately suspend the welfare benefits of any fugitive from justice.

“Why are we, the taxpayers, subsidizing their flight from justice?” Rose said. “With all the troubles this state is having, it is time the Democrats realize that their perpetuation of the problem is destroying the very fabric of our Illinois.”

Specifically, the package of bills includes:

SB 1708, which requires an individual pass a drug test before being eligible to receive public aid. In addition, for recipients to continue receiving public aid they must pass random drug tests prescribed by the Department of Human Services or the Department of Healthcare and Family Services.

SB 1709 requires those who use a Link card (cash assistance card), to have their photo on the card.

SB 1710 would implement a system where the Illinois State Police’s outstanding warrant database would be cross referenced with the state’s public aid recipients database and suspend an individual’s benefits if he or she is a fugitive of the law.

Chapin Rose

Want to stay up to date with your Senator?

Sign up for the District E-Newsletter below: