Georgia Senate Backs Drug Testing for Food Stamps

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Updated: Thu, 20 Mar 2014 10:36:30 EST

ATLANTA (AP) - People seeking government help to buy food could be tested for drug use under a bill approved by the state Senate.

Lawmakers voted 29-22 on Thursday to approve the plan, which now heads back to the House of Representatives for final approval. The vote came on the final day of the General Assembly's annual session. Any legislation that does not pass by midnight automatically fails for the year.

The plan would allow state officials to test recipients if they have a "reasonable suspicion" that a person is using drugs.

A previous plan to drug test welfare recipients in Georgia was abandoned after federal courts found a similar program in Florida was unconstitutional.

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