Legislation is moving through the Missouri Senate that would strictly limit where Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT cards, can be used in the state.
State Senator Will Kraus (R, Lee’s Summit) is sponsoring Senate Bill 251. He says a new federal law that just took effect will ban EBT card use in casinos, liquor stores and adult entertainment venues.
“We’re taking that federal law (and) putting (it) into state statute," Kraus said. "But we’re also adding a few places that we think these cards shouldn’t be used at: amusement parks, entertainment events, athletic events, (or) to purchase alcohol, tobacco (or) lottery tickets.”
The bill is the result of an agreement between Kraus and State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal (D, University City). She had blocked a bill last year that Kraus sponsored that would have placed the photos of the people EBT cards are issued to onto the cards. Chappelle-Nadal appeared with Kraus at a press conference today at the State Capitol.
“These funds are supposed to be used for families that are in need, and specifically for children who are in need," Chapelle-Nadal told reporters. "When I heard that there were people using these cards in casinos and at strip clubs and out of town on possible vacations, I was dismayed.”
The compromise bill was heard today by a Missouri Senate committee and will be voted on later.
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