An Act To Improve the Integrity of Maine's Welfare Programs
Sec. 1. 22 MRSA §3763, sub-§§11 and 12 are enacted to read:
A person who violates this subsection is subject to those penalties specified in subsection 12.
The department shall initiate an administrative hearing for a recipient of benefits who the department has determined has violated subsection 11. The notice and hearing must be conducted consistent with the department rules governing notice and hearing required for an intentional program violation.
Sec. 2. Blocking prohibited purchases through technological means. No later than October 1, 2016, notwithstanding Joint Rule 353, the Commissioner of Health and Human Services shall convene a working group, referred to in this section as "the feasibility working group," to determine feasible options for preventing Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program benefits, through electronic benefits transfer cards, from being used to purchase the prohibited products or services listed in the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 22, section 3763, subsection 11, referred to in this section as "prohibited products or services."
1. Members. The feasibility working group consists of the following members:
2. Duties. The feasibility working group shall research, evaluate, determine and recommend the most effective means of ensuring that electronic benefits transfer cards block at the point of sale the use of TANF benefits to purchase prohibited products or services. The feasibility working group shall determine the cost of any system that it recommends and shall analyze the impact of its recommendation on business establishments of varying sizes doing business in the State.
3. Report. The feasibility working group shall submit a report of its findings and recommendations, together with any legislation necessary to implement the recommendations, to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over health and human services matters no later than December 15, 2016.