Legislation is moving through the Missouri Senate that would strictly limit where Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT cards, can be used in the state.
GOP Senator Will Kraus of Lee’s Summit is sponsoring the bill. He says a new federal law that just took effect will ban EBT card use in casinos, liquor stores and adult entertainment venues.
“We’re taking that federal law (and) putting into state statute, but we’re also adding a few places: amusement parks, entertainment events, athletic events, to purchase alcohol, tobacco (and) lottery tickets,” says Kraus.
The bill is the result of an agreement between Kraus and Democrat Maria Chappelle-Nadal of St. Louis County. She had blocked a bill last year that Kraus sponsored that would have placed the photos of the people EBT cards are issued to onto the cards.
“These funds are supposed to be used for families that are in need, and specifically for children who are in need,” says Chapelle-Nadal. “When I heard that there were people using these cards in casinos and at strip clubs and out of town on possible vacations, I was dismayed.”
This year’s bill is awaiting a Senate committee vote.