- The Maine Wire - https://www.themainewire.com -

Sweetser Counselor to House Speaker: "I have seen significant abuse of TANF, SNAP…"

A counselor working for the non-profit Sweetser has told House Speaker Mark W. Eves (D-North Berwick) that she has witnessed significant abuse of welfare programs and that stopping welfare abuse would be a good way for the state to save money.

Elizabeth S. Bodor of Scarborough wrote Eves in January regarding MaineCare and Medicaid reimbursements for Licensed Clinical Professional Counselors (LCPCs) and Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs). The purpose of her email was to object to a provision of Gov. Paul LePage’s budget proposal which would have limited MaineCare reimbursements to professionals like her.

But in the end of her message, Bodor writes, “I understand that the Governor is solely looking for cost savings, however in this instance, paying for outpatient behavioral health services costs the state far less than paying for ongoing medical care and/or hospitalization for behavioral health problems. I have seen significant abuse of TANF, SNAP, and especially disability in Biddeford; I feel that focusing on investigating and stopping these abuses would be a much more fruitful way to cut expenses.

TANF is the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. SNAP is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, otherwise known as food stamps.

The email was obtained as part of a public records request submitted to the House Speaker’s office for communications regarding Sweetser.

Since receiving this message from Bodor, Eves has emerged as the top opponent of Republican efforts to stop welfare abuse and reform Maine’s welfare programs. Read the full email here: