Electronic Benefits Transfer in Florida: An Exploratory Discussion

Nanda Shrestha, Kenneth Gray, Colin Benjamin

Abstract


In recent years, a great deal of emphasis has been placed on privatizing social (government) services-from prison to pension to public assistance programs. Traditionally a Republican pet project, now even the Democrats are jumping on this bandwagon of privatization, all in the name of downsizing the government and streamlining government bureaucracy. For example, Vice President Gore made public benefits delivery a cornerstone of his "Reinventing Government" plan (ABA Banking ]ournal1994a). Acting on this plan, both federal and state officials have been exploring electronic benefits transfers (EBT)through private contractors as a mechanism to reduce administrative costs and fraud involved in the delivery of social benefits (Piskora 1995a; Debit Card News 1998b).


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