A year ago, Pennsylvania instituted means-testing for food stamp applicants, in an effort to cut down on those age-old scourges, waste and fraud. Here’s what they found: Since May 1, 2012, the program has denied 2,027 people who were already receiving aid, and rejected another 1,923 new applicants. In addition, 111,000 applicants were rejected for not filing proper paperwork, an increase of 17,000 since last year, raising concerns that red tape is denying people benefits. The asset test states that any under-60 household with fewer than $5,500 in assets (not counting house and car) cannot qualify. Over 60, that number jumps to $9,000.
While the Corbett administration could point to those 4,000 applicants as examples of wasteful spending, some critics say that merely expending state dollars to oversee a federal program with marginal rule-breaking is taxpayer “abuse” in its own right. About 900,000 households in the state currently receive food stamps. [Inquirer]