Illegal Food Stamp Trafficking Up 30 Percent Since 2006

0 Shares
135163128

Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a study on the illegal resale of food stamps under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The report found a 30 percent increase in the proportion of SNAP recipients who illegally sell their SNAP credits back to stores, which fraudulently redeem the credits by paying the SNAP recipients the credits’ cash value.

The 30 percent jump has been incremental, dating back to 2006 — the earliest period covered in the study. Food stamp trafficking fraud now accounts for an estimated $858 million per year in diverted SNAP funds, compared with $330 million in 2006.

The SNAP program itself has also grown immensely since President Barack Obama’s aggressive expansion of the program’s reach, with last year’s benefits totaling more than $74 billion — compared with $34 billion in 2008.

Predictably, the study links the increase in SNAP fraud with the commensurate increase in the Obama-era expansion.

And even though the dollar value of misappropriated SNAP funds represents a smaller percentage of the entire SNAP budget today than it did during Bill Clinton’s Presidency (3 percent now, compared to 4 percent in the mid-1990s), technology is likely to thank. The program’s full-scale adoption of point-of-sale, declining-balance debit cards, which debuted in limited numbers in the late 1980s, took human “error” out of the old process of exchanging and tracking government-issued paper scraps of fiat food currency.

But personal relationships and the low-budget exigencies of mom-and-pop economics still combine to account for the bulk of transactions in which “customers” swap Food Stamps for cash.

The U.S. Food and Nutrition Service’s press release for the study states: “[T]he report attributes the change in the rate to 1.3 percent primarily to the growth in small- and medium-sized retailers authorized to accept SNAP that may not provide sufficient healthful offerings to recipients. These retailers accounted for 85 percent of all trafficking redemptions. This finding echoes a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that suggested minimal stocking requirements in SNAP may contribute to corrupt retailers entering the program.”

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

  • dan

    Some graft and corruption connected with a Goverment program….I’m shocked !

  • justasskin

    Thieves and crooks never sleep. They work very hard at their jobs just like anyone else and theft, corruption and graft can now be considered occupations rather than crimes. It may be interesting to investigate how many honourable jobs there are now compared to dishonest occupations? Food for thought when one discusses it honestly without bias or umbrage.

  • red neck

    Anyone besides me think that when obama-care kicks in corruption will be well over 70%…

  • Michael Shreve

    Obama makes his OWN reality. THAT is evidence he is afflicted with PSYCHOTIC megalomania.

    • JLouisK

      He is Hitler reincarnate… He wants to enslave the whole world with his ideals.

      • Vis Fac

        JLouisK:

        “The best way to take control over a people and control them utterly is to take a little of their freedom at a time, to
        erode rights by a thousand tiny and almost imperceptible reductions. In this way the people will not see those rights and freedoms being removed until past the point at which these changes cannot be reversed.” – Adolf Hitler

        “By means of shrewd lies unremittingly repeated, it is possible to make people believe that heaven is hell – and hell heaven. The greater the lie, the more readily it will be believed.” Adolf Hitler Mein Kampf

        Do you see any similarities here?

        The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

        A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

        Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone thinking we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials
        are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

        Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

        Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!” shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

        Libertas inaestimabilis res est

        Semper-Fi

        • JLouisK

          Yep, and the FEMA camps,…

          • Vis Fac

            Oh You liked those too did you? How about the police confiscating people’s guns illegally wasn’t that A fine bit of usurpation of ones second and fourth amendment rights?

            The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil
            is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

            A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

            Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone thinking
            we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

            Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb
            contesting the vote.”

            Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!” shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress
            is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

            Libertas inaestimabilis res est

            Semper-Fi

          • JLouisK

            Didn’t Hitler ban firearms for the general public?

          • Vis Fac

            Not to the General Public only the Jews and we all know that ensued.

            The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil
            is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

            A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

            Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown
            in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone thinking we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials
            are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

            Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb
            contesting the vote.”
            Our Republic allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!” shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

            Libertas inaestimabilis res est

            Semper-Fi

      • Michael Shreve

        SAME psychology.

  • Vis Fac

    And are we supposed to be surprised at this? Indolence and sloth are the bane of society the apathetic feed these banes with OPM certainly not their own.

    The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

    A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people
    and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

    Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone thinking we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

    Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

    Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!”
    shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress
    is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

    Libertas inaestimabilis res est

    Semper-Fi