During its journey through the General Assembly, a bill that would require drug testing for some applicants for food stamps and welfare generated controversy and drew fierce opposition from Democrats. Ultimately, though, House Bill 772 was approved on the final day of the legislative session last week. It would require people applying for this government assistance to be tested if they raise “reasonable suspicion’’ of illegal drug use.
A bill requiring food stamp and welfare recipients to submit to drug testing if suspected of illegal drug use has taken another step forward in the General Assembly. The Senate Health and Human Services Committee narrowly approved HB 772 on Monday.
Some Georgia applicants for food stamps and welfare benefits would have to pass a drug test under a House bill that cleared a committee Monday on a 7-6 vote. People applying for this government assistance would require testing if they raised “reasonable suspicion” of illegal drug use.
A federal appeals court has upheld a temporary ban on a Florida law requiring drug testing of welfare recipients. The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled Tuesday that a lower court was right to temporarily halt enforcement of Florida's drug-testing program. The opinion says the state had failed to show a "substantial special need" for the testing.
Georgia lawmakers have passed a bill that would require welfare recipients to take a drug test before receiving benefits. GOP supporters of the measure say it would save taxpayers money but opponents say it’s unconstitutional and uncharitable.