Food Stamps and Benefits in Minnesota!

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Just over a month ago, one of my friends here in the apartment building sent me an invite to join a Facebook group called MN News and Gossip (MN Spotlight).  This is a closed group open to Iron Range residents.  I really wasn’t sure about this at first.  I have all the news resources I need, and for the most part I could careless about general gossip.

I did eventually join the group.  What did I really expect to see?  I expected to see a Facebook group that was 80% gossip and 20% local news, and with a membership made up of bored housewives with computers, police scanners, and way too much time on their hands.  Nope, that’s not the case at all.  The group is made up of local residents from Minnesota’s Iron Range who want to keep informed about what’s happening in their communities, and they have taken it upon themselves to become the grapevine that areas like this so badly needed.  After all, who can you count on for community news when the  news media doesn’t tell the whole story, or when they decide what news the public should or shouldn’t have?

For the longest time, I just followed the group, but I didn’t post anything.  Members posted how they had their kid’s bikes stolen, about vandalism in their neighborhoods, thefts of anything and everything, and every high speed car chase in the area.  People here also post about local area events which I personally find quite useful.

Two nights ago, an article from WDIO.COM, a television station in Duluth, MN posted an article on their website entitled “Trump Proposal Could Cut Off Food Stamps to 35K in Minnesota“.   The article has everybody in this group in an uproar, and rightly so.  The article was really nothing more than a vague attack on President Trump and as far as I’m concerned, the author of the article was totally irresponsible in publishing this article with such little information.  It was like they wanted to intentionally create a panic.  It has everybody in this group, and I’m sure a lot of others in a panic that they are going to lose their food stamp benefits.

Nothing could be further from the truth!

I quote from another article that is much more thorough…

When Americans think of food stamp recipients, images of desperate lower-income Americans typically come to mind. Taxpayers desperately want to believe that their hard-earned dollars are helping poor people struggling to make ends meet with welfare benefits helping them get the vital nutrients they need to stay alive. Imagine the outrage, then, as taxpayers find out that some of the people on food stamps are in fact millionaires.

Because of a bizarre loophole in how food stamps (formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP) are administered by states, millionaires — or even billionaires — can receive food stamps. A loophole allows bureaucrats to simply ignore federally mandated asset requirements. As a result, an estimated 3.1 million to 5 million people currently on food stamps shouldn’t be receiving this welfare benefit. Taxpayers deserve better than having to share their paychecks with well-off Americans who are unlikely to be in want of a meal.

Trump’s welcome rule change: No more food stamps for millionaires

The truth of the matter is that nobody who genuinely needs the assistance is going to lose their benefits.  President Trump’s goal is to simply close the loophole that would allow millionaires to receive food stamp benefits.

I’m a hardcore political atheist.  While I follow politics very closely, I don’t believe one single word the government tells me.  When I hear about a story like this, I never take it on face value.  I go and check it out.  With all of the fake news that is being put out by major news outlets, you simply can’t take anything on face value anymore.  I was bit skeptical about how millionaires could qualify for food stamp benefits, so I checked a little further.

In June of 2016, Rob Undersander, a retired engineer from Waite Park, MN, filled out an application for food stamps at a Sterns County Social Services office.  Undersander’s intention was not to cheat the system. Undersander intentionally set out to expose the systemic flaw in the “broad-based categorical eligibility” policy of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, more commonly referred to as the food stamp program.

The policy allows applicants to bypass an assets test, so someone could qualify for food stamps even if he has property and bank accounts, as long as his income is low enough.

Three weeks after applying, Undersander received the electronic benefits transfer card in the mail that he said he hoped would be denied. It came with a letter informing him he had $278 per month of benefits on it to spend.

 

He notified a local newspaper, the St. Cloud Times. After the newspaper published a piece, he said, two women from the county’s fraud and abuse investigation unit came to his home, asked a few questions, and left.

Although he’s retired, he doesn’t yet collect Social Security, which would be enough income to make him ineligible.

Over 19 months, Undersander received $6,000 from the government—which he donated to charity.

Undersander contends that an asset test that ensures only the needy can access food stamps would ensure that needy people will be helped.

The Agriculture Department, which administers the food-stamp program, is considering a regulation that would eliminate the broad-based policy, to ensure the program would measure whether someone is genuinely in need.

The article entitled “Why Are Millionaires Able to Receive Food Stamps?” tells the whole story.

Is Rob Undersander a hero or a villain for what he did?  That’s something that you have to decide for yourself.  In my book he is a hero!  Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, Democrat from Ohio has labelled Undersander a villain.

You took benefits from the very citizens you serve in your volunteer work. You did all this to continue your right-wing crusade against poor people.Congresswoman Marcia Fudge

Pardon me?!  Right wing crusade against poor people?!  Democrats have become so far left that they haven’t got a clue what right wing is anymore!  If nothing else, this woman is totally out of touch with her constituent in Ohio.

Undersander showed that the broad-based categorical eligibility is an avenue for those who are not eligible to receive benefits that they are not entitled to.  However, Democrats seem to be fine with this.

Can we say Democratic Hypocrisy?

Of course, Democrats will try to keep a lid on this.  They will try to make themselves out to be the true heroes of the people.  Just watch what they have in store for us in the future.  I can guarantee it will turn your stomach!

 

About the author

Chris Blackwood

Hello and welcome to my blog! Blacky's Burrow is my personal blog about me and my best friends Misty and Johnny. These are the atypical day to day antics of a crazy cat person and a Rose-Point Siamese cat that's just a little crazier.

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By Chris Blackwood

Chris Blackwood

Hello and welcome to my blog! Blacky's Burrow is my personal blog about me and my best friends Misty and Johnny. These are the atypical day to day antics of a crazy cat person and a Rose-Point Siamese cat that's just a little crazier.

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