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The state of Nevada has knowingly failed to stop welfare recipients from spending their taxpayer funded entitlements at strip clubs, liquor stores and casinos despite a 2012 federal law that forbid these exact types of transactions.

Instead of public officials accepting blame for failing to police this spending they are coming up with some pathetic and frankly insulting excuses. The citizens of Nevada should be outraged.

From AMI:

An AMI Newswire analysis of a state welfare database found that since the federal law was enacted, Nevada welfare recipients accessed at least $890,000 in cash benefits at prohibited locations.

Silver State welfare recipients withdrew cash in some splashy places: $11,640 at Lucky Liquors in Reno; $9,560 at prominent Vegas casinos including Aria, Circus Circus, Mandalay Bay and MGM; and $2,740 at Nevada strip bars.

The federal Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 mandates that states “prevent unauthorized spending of benefits” in casinos, liquor stores and venues where “performers disrobe.”

Businesses where welfare card-holders have withdrawn cash benefits say they don’t have the resources to stop the abuses.

"We wouldn’t accept the cards, but they could go to the ATM and it’s impossible to monitor,” said Brian Minter, who co-owns Vegas’s OG’s Gentleman’s Club – one of the strip bars with welfare withdrawals. “I owned low-income hotels, and I know how terrible the system is, and what they spend their money on.”

Many such withdrawals are by recipients working in those locations, said Miki Allard, executive staff specialist at the Nevada Welfare Division.

“We have people who work in casinos and strip clubs and they may take that money out to pay their babysitters,” Allard told AMI Newswire. “There’s no proof the money is being misused.”

Casinos often have restaurants, said David Turner, a Reno accountant who chairs the Nevada Taxpayers Association, so the federal law might have been too broad.

“I think it’s good to regulate anyone on welfare,” Turner said. “But too often, I see government regulate with a sledge-hammer.”

But Nevada officials wouldn’t be playing down the magnitude of the problem if it affected their own bottom line, said Pete Sepp, president of the National Taxpayers Union.

“Next year, when budget time comes around, would they object to a less than 2 percent reduction in their budget?” Sepp said. “If it’s not that big a deal, they can live with the reduction in funding.”

Asking anyone to think that the money being spent at Casinos is for babysitting is very hard to believe. Liberals are once again not accepting responsibility for not enforcing the law but blaming a system who is too harsh on welfare.

Asking welfare recipients to refrain from spending money on ill-advised pursuits like drinking, strippers and gambling is within the best interest of the taxpayers funding entitlement programs.



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