Austin -- State Representative Ken King, Canadian, filed HB 1244, which would require persons seeking governmental financial assistance benefits to submit to a drug test.
"I filed this legislation because I think it's the right thing to do. Although there are certainly legitimate needs for public assistance, it is unfair for Texas taxpayers to subsidize drug addictions," King said. "This bill will encourage personal accountability and will also help to prevent the personal misuse of tax dollars."
The bill stipulates that adult applicants, excluding an applicant applying solely on behalf of a child, must submit to a drug test to establish eligibility for financial assistance benefits. It further states that if the presence of drugs are indicated on this test, that person is ineligible to receive benefits for a period of six months. However, an applicant may reapply for financial assistance benefits after three months if that person provides proof of completion or current enrollment in a substance abuse treatment program.
Rep. King continued by saying, "When I was on the campaign trail, folks would always ask me if I would support legislation requiring drug tests for potential welfare recipients and I told them that I would. Today, I'm doing my constituents one better by filing the legislation myself."