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Food Stamp Trafficking Bill Moving Forward in Legislature

Associated Press

Food Stamp Trafficking Bill Moving Forward in Legislature

CREATED Apr. 12, 2013

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A proposal that would penalize the trafficking of food stamp benefits is moving forward in the Wisconsin Legislature.

The proposal from Republican Rep. Samantha Kerkman, of Randall, would make it illegal to buy, sell or transfer food stamp benefits for cash and unlawful purposes.

It is already illegal in Wisconsin to make a fraudulent application for food stamps, fail to update income information or transfer benefits to a non-qualified person. But the law does not address trafficking benefits.

A Senate committee is scheduled to vote on the measure Friday.

Kerkman says she has heard about incidents where food stamp users in her district would sell their benefit cards and ask for a free replacement. Opponents argue the proposal stigmatize users who haven't done anything wrong.