Schmidt voted against welfare reform

To the editor:

An explosive report recently surfaced showing that the Department of Transitional Assistance loses millions of taxpayer dollars to fraud and abuse after Representative Paul Schmidt voted against enacting common sense reforms to prevent the very scams that are costing the state millions.

Representative Paul Schmidt  has a lot of explaining to do now that it turns out he voted against common sense welfare reforms that would have protected taxpayers against the massive corruption and waste occurring within the Department of Transitional Assistance. By voting against reforms, Representative Schmidt sided with the career politicians on Beacon Hill who have sat by while taxpayer dollars are wasted.  Schmidt voted to Send To Study amendments 385 and 387 to House Bill 3400 preventing implementation of reforms to prevent welfare abuse.

About a month later, the state auditor’s office released a report showing $2.39 million in welfare benefits were paid out to more than 1,160 people who were listed as dead! The report also showed DTA failed to use available technology to identify another $15 million in questionable benefits and paid out —  $1 million to criminals using phony Social Security numbers.

Rep. Schmidt is misguided in voting against welfare reforms. The people fleecing our welfare system are stealing from those who truly need the help and from the taxpayers who deserve a government that stands up to criminals, not one that  hands them welfare benefits.

Mary Lou Daxland

Chairwoman, Westport Republican Town Committee

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