So how much money can you have in the banks and still get food stamps in Minnesota?
As it turns out, you can swim in caverns of gold coins like Scrooge McDuck and still receive aid under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
Millionaire Rob Undersander, who says he and his wife are worth more than $1 million combined, claims he’s been getting food stamps for more than a year — all in an effort to prove to lawmakers that the system has a huge loophole.
Undersander, who is retired, spends some of his time volunteering with the Central Minnesota Council on Aging, where he helps other seniors navigate the often murky waters of enrolling in government assistance programs.
One of those programs is SNAP, which is meant to provide low-income individuals and families with food stamps.
“I’m sitting in the [training] class, I’ll never forget this,” Undersander told the Washington Free Beacon. “We’re going through pages and pages of all these programs for low-income seniors that have ascending income [qualification] levels and ascending asset levels. But when you get to SNAP, it’s only income.”
“I’ve got the [SNAP] form in my hand and I’m thinking of my financial situation, and I said ‘you know, I just can’t believe this,'” Undersander said. “So I went down to the second floor of the Sterns County Courthouse, stood in line a little bit, handed in the application and three weeks later I’m getting food stamps, a balance on my EBT card.”
“Even legislators are not aware that millionaires can get food stamps,” he added.
The problem is that when determining eligibility for SNAP benefits, which are largely funded by federal tax dollars but distributed by the states, Minnesota only looks at income, not net worth.
And as the Free Beacon noted, 33 other states do the same thing.
Undersander has told his story to legislators in Minnesota in an effort to expose the loophole so that they will find a way to close it.
But at least one local Democrat was not amused by Undersander’s tactics.
“You knew this was wrong and you did it anyway,” Democrat state Rep. John Considine told Undersander last year, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported. “I find it pretty despicable. … I am just sorry there is no way we can prosecute you.”
But Undersander hasn’t been collecting SNAP benefits for his own gain.
“Undersander said he carefully documented how he re-donated ‘equal to or more’ of the SNAP money he received to charitable causes in his county in addition to other direct assistance he provided to needy people in his area, so that he did not personally benefit,” the Free Beacon reported.
Millionaire Rob Undersander of Waite Park, MN exposed just how broken the Minnesota welfare system is when he and his wife collected nearly $6,000 in food stamps under the Supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP).https://t.co/NcBohqh53H
— Alpha News MN (@AlphaNewsMN) March 20, 2019
Even though Considine wanted to punish Undersander for … acting completely being within the bounds of the law, state lawmakers have not yet changed the SNAP provisions.
On Thursday, meanwhile, the U.S. House agriculture subcommittee will hear Undersander’s story.
His goal, Undersander says, is not to eliminate SNAP assistance to needy families, but rather to make sure it is the truly needy who receive the aid.
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