News From Terre Haute, Indiana

February 15, 2012

Plan to drug test Indiana welfare recipients stalls

TOM DAVIES
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — A bill to require drug testing for some Indiana welfare recipients has failed in a legislative committee after concerns were raised about the possible $1 million cost to start the program.

The Senate’s health committee tied 5-5 on the bill this morning, stalling it for now. The bill’s sponsor is Rep. Jud McMillin. The Brookville Republican says he’ll look for a way to revive it later in the legislative session.

The House passed the bill after adding a provision requiring lawmakers to submit to drug tests before receiving perks like parking spots and laptops. The bill proposed a three-county pilot program for testing those receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families funds.

Republican Sen. Beverly Gard of Greenfield voted against the bill, saying she believes the program’s cost needed more review.