In August of 2019 the USDA fined the State of Iowa $1.8 million for its error rate on distributions of SNAP benefits. At the time of the fine the national average of errors was around 6% while Iowa’s was nearly double that – with 10% in errors. The result of the errors was overpayment of SNAP benefits by $40 million dollars.
For years, politicians have talked about welfare reform without making any changes. This week Senate Republicans led and acted on a significant reform by approving SF 2272 curb the of waste, fraud, and abuse in public assistance programs so that we can help the truly needy, making certain there are resources available for them.
This reform creates a real-time system to verify eligibility for public assistance programs. The system will cross-check state databases for dual enrollment in public assistance programs, household asset verification, residency, citizenship, and identity verification. By adding the real-time system DHS caseworkers are given access to multiple sources for more efficient work and better response time.
This piece of legislation will help to prioritize program integrity while making sure Iowa taxpayers money is spent appropriately. By the time this is fully implemented, SF 2272 is expected to save Iowans approximately $12 million.
Due to the success of Senate Republican’s economic policies, the Iowa economy needs more people in the workforce. While this bill does not remove benefits from any eligible Iowan, it will support and encourage more Iowans to join the workforce.
I am proud that Senate Republicans are fulfilling our responsibility of continuing to look at reforms to keep Iowa’s workforce strong. This reform is something all taxpayers should be proud of.