COLUMBUS - 

Ohio’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Medicaid are a necessary part of supporting citizens in need. With limited resources, it is imperative that money for these programs are directed as efficiently and appropriately as possible.  For these reasons, it is our duty to protect these programs from fraud and abuse.


Last year, the Ohio Auditor of State conducted a study and issued a report identifying certain weaknesses in these programs. For example, the study found 36 cases where a deceased person was still receiving benefits on their Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards for SNAP. Among other instances, cards were misused and money was improperly allocated due to both fraud and distribution errors.


After reading these findings and researching best practices in other states, I joined with my colleague Representative Rob McColley and introduced House Bill 119, the Protecting Public Assistance Integrity Act. This bill makes changes to the administration of SNAP and Medicaid assistance to improve accountability and eradicate fraud. The bill requires more frequent cross-checks of databases, more efficient gathering of information to determine eligibility of recipients, an expanded list of items to check (such as lottery winnings, state residency, employment status and financial resources), and codifies existing practices to ensure the system runs as smoothly as possible. The bill also establishes a process for prosecution if fraudulent activity is discovered.


Ultimately, these simple changes to the way the programs are monitored and maintained will safeguard taxpayer funds. Every dollar which goes to someone who does not qualify is a dollar diverted from someone who truly needs it.  By making these reforms, the programs will operate more effectively, saving taxpayer dollars and allocating resources properly to those in need.

 
 
 
  
Featured Posts

Rep. Mike Henne Announces Sales Tax Holiday For First Weekend Of August

 
Columbus - 

State Representative Mike Henne (R-Clayton) today announced that a sales tax holiday will be held this weekend, an opportunity for parents to receive some tax relief during back-to-school shopping in preparation for the new school year which will also stimulate economic activity for Ohio’s retailers. This year’s sales tax holiday was established by the state operating budget, House Bill 49.



 
 

Bipartisan Proposal To Provide Transparency In Police Records

 
COLUMBUS - 

State Reps. Michael Henne (R-Clayton) and Heather Bishoff (D–Blacklick) on Wednesday outlined a bill to provide transparency in police records. Their legislation, House Bill 429, would require private police forces to comply with the same records requirements as public forces.



 
 

Rep. Henne Hosts Teacher Appreciation Essay Contest For Local Students

 
COLUMBUS - 

In celebration of Teacher Appreciation Week on May 6-10, State Representative Mike Henne (R-Clayton) has announced that he will be hosting a “Teacher Appreciation Essay Contest,” which gives local students the opportunity to showcase their writing skills and show appreciation for their favorite teacher.



 
 

Rep. Henne Discusses Municipal Income Tax Uniformity

 

Representative Henne recently discussed legislation he is sponsoring to reform the way Ohio's municipal income tax is collected.