Pennsylvania plans to make the amount of food stamps that people receive contingent on the assets they possess - an unexpected move that bucks national trends and places the commonwealth among a minority of states.
Specifically, the Department of Public Welfare said that as of May 1, people under 60 with more than $2,000 in savings and other assets would no longer be eligible for food stamps. For people over 60, the limit would be $3,250.
Houses and retirement benefits would be exempt from being counted as assets. If a person owns a car, that vehicle also would also be exempt, but any additional vehicle worth more than $4,650 would be considered a countable asset.
Anne Bale, a spokeswoman for DPW, said the asset test was a way to ensure that "people with resources are not taking advantage of the food-stamp program," funded by federal money.
In addition, Bale said, the test was related to DPW Secretary Gary Alexander's initiative to reduce waste, fraud, and abuse across all department programs.Read more »