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Louisiana Gives Away $1.3 Million in Food Stamps to Dead People

• July 8, 2014 3:16 pm

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Louisiana spent about $1.3 million on food stamps for people who were already dead between 2009 and 2013, the Times-Picayune reports.

A report issued by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor Monday revealed the government waste:

In all, state benefits went out to 3,938 deceased people over the four-year period examined by the auditor. The Louisiana auditor only reviewed records concerning single people who had died. The total amount of money spent on food stamps for single people in Louisiana during this time was $1.08 billion.

Much of the money — $556,000 — was spent on people who had been dead for at least four months. A fair amount of money — $272,951 — was also spent on people who had only been dead one month.

The money was being spent by "someone not qualified to receive those benefits," a WBRZ reporter explained. The audit found the discrepancy back in April and revealed the problem to the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). The Times-Picayune reported the DCFS said "it is difficult to cut off people's benefits in the month after they die because there can be a lag in the reporting of their death. The state also can't revoke food stamps unless they go unused for a year, which means they could easily be acquired and spent by another person."

Published under: Government Waste