Ninety-eight percent of Florida’s welfare applicants passed a new mandatory drug screening that was implemented by the state.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott said in June that it is “unfair for Florida taxpayers to subsidize drug addiction,” drawing criticism from the ACLU and numerous Democrats who see the new drug-screening law as unconstitutional.
Contrary to Scott’s assumptions, most of the applicants did not test positive for any drugs.
TheRoot.com reports the costs of testing the applicants:
Cost of the tests averages about $30. Assuming that 1,000 to 1,500 applicants take the test every month, the state will owe about $28,800-$43,200 monthly in reimbursements to those who test drug-free.
That compares with roughly $32,200-$48,200 the state may save on one month’s worth of rejected applicants.
Net savings to the state: $3,400 to $5,000 annually on one month’s worth of rejected applicants. Over 12 months, the money saved on all rejected applicants would add up to $40,800 to $60,000 for a program that state analysts have predicted will cost $178 million this fiscal year.
Maybe Florida politicians are the ones who need to be tested to see if they’re under the influence of something (prejudice, perhaps?) that’s making them think this wasteful program is good public policy.