Texans spent billions of dollars on food stamp program - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Texans spent billions of dollars on food stamp program

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Texas - New data collected by the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation ranks Texas as second in the nation in the amount spent on food stamp purchases.

Texans spent $6-billion last year through the federal food stamp program.

Here's a potential solution by lawmakers, they've proposed legislation requiring drug testing for those receiving food stamps and unemployment benefits.

Governor Rick Perry says drug testing ensures individuals are using these benefits for their intended purpose and hopes this will be an incentive to move more people into the workforce and finish school by remaining drug-free.

The bill would require applicants to pass a drug test if a new screening program determines they may be using illegal drugs.

It would also require those with past drug convictions to undergo a mandatory screening.

Both of these rules would apply to not only those seeking benefits themselves, but to any non-recipient parents of children who receive benefits.

The bill would also ban the use of public funds to buy alcohol, tobacco products, lottery tickets, adult entertainment, firearms, ammunition and bingo.