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Mac IX

New Florida Nickname: THE STUPID STATE

We want to thank our new Governor and legislature for our new nickname as THE STUPID STATE.

Already one of the last in the nation in teacher pay.
De-funding what does exist, taking away money for new textbooks, Aides, Technology, Curriculum etc.
Closing or cutting back all public libraries.
Removing scholarship support for needy students.
Now working to cut out Red Light Cameras, whose only function is to stop people who are breaking the law and endangering other drivers.
Increasing class size directly in the face of twice voted in constitutional change to reduce the number of student per classroom
Basic all school funding, teacher pay and other areas on how many of the worst students can be brought up to the level needed to pass a given test on a given day.
Removing all support or consideration for average, let alone higher level students.
Basing entire school program on ability to pass a given test on a given day.
Now working to develop "Virtual (teacher-less) classrooms" all computer driven while not funding the technology to even make that program feasible.

and all the time talking about what a wonderful job they are doing bringing in jobs and new business, as if any self respecting business would come to a place where THE STUPID STATE was the proven name.
bieramar

Hear! Hear!

The ongoing dismantling of governments "of and by the people" in Florida reinforces my decision to abandon that sinking ship and relocate here in New Mexico.
puc reducks

Hell, I've been calling Florida that since April 6, 1990. Rolling Eyes


Great post, Mac!
bieramar

Stupid is as stupid does

Florida's new law, eff. July 1, requiring those eligible for Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) under the Temporary Assistance to Needy Family (TANF) program to get drug tested, is getting world wide attention in the media.

Basic parameters for TANF/TCA
in Florida eff. July 1


- Funded 90% by federal block grant, 10% Florida
- Gross family income 185% of federal poverty level to be eligible
- Lifetime cumulative total of 48 months
- U.S. citizen or legal alien resident
- Individuals convicted of drug trafficking are not eligible
- Must satisfy work requirements established in federal law
- Applicants consent to being drug screened as a condition of eligibility
- When ordered to be tested, the adult pays for the test (approx. $10 for preliminary, and $25 for 2nd confirmatory if first is positive)
- If tests negative, recipients will be reimbursed in cash for what they paid
- Recipients prior to July 1, 2011 not subject to drug screening
- New recipients on/after July 1, 2011 can refuse to be tested
- Adults will be disqualified from receiving further TCA benefits if they refuse to submit to a drug screen or confirmatory test; or they test positive for drugs as a result of a confirmation test
- Failure of the 2nd (confirmation) tests makes the adult ineligible for cash for 12 months; or 6 months if they complete a licensed substance abuse treatment program and test negative
- Emancipated teen parents are considered adults for the purpose of this law
- Those adult and teen parents with minor children who are denied cash for flunking the drug screen can designate someone else to receive the cash payments for the kids.

Background and DCF estimates

- From January 1999 to May 2001, a
pilot project was accomplished in Jacksonville and parts of Putnam County to drug screen and drug test applicants for TANF. During the project, 8,797 applicants or recipients were tested, and 335 applicants tested positive for a controlled substance; total cost of the pilot project was $2.7 million. A Florida State University researcher under contract to evaluate the pilot program did not recommend continuation or statewide expansion of the project, as very little difference was found in employment and earnings between those who tested positive versus those who tested negative.

- In 2010 in Florida there were 113,346 total recipients at some point during the year, with an average monthly cash payment of $236. In FY 2010-2011 the appropriation of TANF funds to support temporary cash assistance in Florida was $211,115,965. DCF estimates that between 170-340 people (based on current caseloads of 113,346 per annum) would test positive as a result of a drug screen[*].

Obviously the major beneficiaries will be the private sector drug screening companies - with the Florida and U.S. taxpayers ultimately picking up the tab for all but a small minority of the tests; and paying for all the additional administrative hours worked by state workers associated with the testing program.

My main objection is that this new law is more of a "blue law" attempting to restrict and conform all citizens/legal residents to others' religion-based morality than it is a fiscal cost-effective law.

[*]I question this estimate, which is cited in the Florida House' markup of the Bill. Nationwide metrics are that almost 7% of adults in non-"welfare"-recipient households test positive for illegal drugs, compared to slightly more than 9% in "welfare"-recipient homes.

========= next ==========

The Governor earlier had issued an Executive Order ordering random testing for state workers. Tuesday the ACLU filed a lawsuit against the EO.
coebul

So you have trouble with drug testing who?
bieramar

coebul wrote:
So you have trouble with drug testing who?


I don't have trouble with - in fact I strongly support - testing for drugs which affect judgment and physical/mental functioning of persons in all sorts of jobs where being stoned would endanger others.

Pilots, vehicle drivers, swat teams, ship's captains, and on and on and on.  

I do have trouble with taxpayers' dollars being used test persons who are not involved in activities which endanger others, and persons whose drug use does not affect their working and earnings as they make a better life for themselves and their children (TANF/TCA Program) - while simultaneously subsidizing the medical community at the whim of local social workers.  It is creating waste, and the potential for fraud and abuse, not eliminating them.
coebul

bieramar wrote:
coebul wrote:
So you have trouble with drug testing who?


I don't have trouble with - in fact I strongly support - testing for drugs which affect judgment and physical/mental functioning of persons in all sorts of jobs where being stoned would endanger others.

Pilots, vehicle drivers, swat teams, ship's captains, and on and on and on.
Teachers?

bieramar wrote:
I do have trouble with taxpayers' dollars being used test persons who are not involved in activities which endanger others, and persons whose drug use does not affect their working and earnings as they make a better life for themselves and their children (TANF/TCA Program) - while simultaneously subsidizing the medical community at the whim of local social workers. It is creating waste, and the potential for fraud and abuse, not eliminating them.
What about drug testing for welfare and food stamps recipients?  Or those on extended unemployment?
bieramar

I am opposed to drug testing of public school teachers; I support a functional screening when they arrive at the school however.  

Drunk or stoned public school teachers should not be in a classroom, or conducting extracurricular activities.  But preventing such behaviours doesn't require urine, blood or hair drug testing.

Welfare recipients? That's what this thread is all about -- and I've already explained my opposition.

Food stamp recipients?  Ditto.

Those on extended unemployment?  Ditto.
coebul

bieramar wrote:
I am opposed to drug testing of public school teachers; I support a functional screening when they arrive at the school however.
What a teacher does on his/her own time is their business with some reservations.

bieramar wrote:
Drunk or stoned public school teachers should not be in a classroom, or conducting extracurricular activities. But preventing such behaviours doesn't require urine, blood or hair drug testing.


bieramar wrote:
Welfare recipients? That's what this thread is all about -- and I've already explained my opposition.

Food stamp recipients? Ditto.

Those on extended unemployment? Ditto.
I believe Federal, state and local assistance recipients should be drug tested.   If you are stoned and can not pass a drug test then you can not be employed with many companies.  This should disqualify you for unemployment.  Ditto for public assistance for a slightly different reason.  Which would be using public assistance for the purchase of illegal drugs.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
I believe Federal, state and local assistance recipients should be drug tested. If you are stoned and can not pass a drug test then you can not be employed with many companies. This should disqualify you for unemployment.


If you are stoned and can't pass a drug test, and that is the reason for your not being hired, under present Florida law you'll have violated your entitlement agreement and are thus disqualified from further payments.
No need for the taxpayers to pay for a drug test for ALL recipients.
coebul

With out the drug test how ya gona know?  Look into their eyes?  How about the honor system.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
With out the drug test how ya gona know? Look into their eyes? How about the honor system.


As you yourself pointed out: "If you are stoned and can not pass a drug test then you can not be employed with many companies."

(Once again) Here's how it works in Florida:
- You are receiving unemployment checks;
- You must document where you've applied for work;
- If a prospective employer requires a drug test and you refuse to take it, you no longer are entitled to UI.
- If you tested positive on the prospective employer's drug test and they don't hire you, you no longer are entitled to UI.

Get it?

NO TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS WERE SPENT FOR A DRUG TEST.

Remember the pilot test program cited in the first post today?

"8,797 applicants or recipients were tested, and 335 applicants tested positive for a controlled substance... very little difference was found in employment and earnings between those who tested positive versus those who tested negative."

Those receiving Temporary Dash Assistance under TANF were also required to look for a job.

Taxpayers' funded drug testing was a waste of time and money.  No correlation and no benefits resulted in helping the non-drug users and the drug users finding work or amount of earnings.
scrutney

and here's my question..
now i understand that drug tests are legal in the work place...and i'm not arguing that point but...:

the 5th amendment wrote:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.


that whole self incrimination thing bothers me when government gets into the mix.
and considering that rick scott is driving this thing, i feel compelled to mention that he has more than a nodding acquaintance with the 5th amendment.
coebul

bieramar wrote:
coebul wrote:
With out the drug test how ya gona know? Look into their eyes? How about the honor system.


As you yourself pointed out: "If you are stoned and can not pass a drug test then you can not be employed with many companies."

(Once again) Here's how it works in Florida:
- You are receiving unemployment checks;
- You must document where you've applied for work;
- If a prospective employer requires a drug test and you refuse to take it, you no longer are entitled to UI.
- If you tested positive on the prospective employer's drug test and they don't hire you, you no longer are entitled to UI.

Get it?
Had it all along. What of those employer that don't require drug tests? Many don't. It needs to be a part of unemployment compensation. You apply for it and you are subject to random testing. Got that?

scrutney wrote:


that whole self incrimination thing bothers me when government gets into the mix.
and considering that rick scott is driving this thing, i feel compelled to mention that he has more than a nodding acquaintance with the 5th amendment.
There is that?  When I was working for others I let it be known that I was against testing.  Not because I couldn't pass them because in most cases on most occasions I can and could pass one.  But!  That 5th amendment does keep cropping up.  

But another question needs to be addressed on the 5th.  What about finger prints and DNA?  You can be compelled by the court to donate either or both.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
It [drug testing] needs to be a part of unemployment compensation.

You apply for it and you are subject to random testing.


Which round robin's us back to my initial opinion:
"My main objection is that this new law is more of a "blue law" attempting to restrict and conform all citizens/legal residents to others' religion-based morality than it is a fiscal cost-effective law."

Your opinion - that drug testing be a condition of receiving UI benefits - is exactly the morality-based social engineering effort to which I object.

Big Brother at his best.
bieramar

scrutney raises the issue of self-incrimination regarding mandatory drug-testing in Florida as a requisite to receive cash welfare for children in poverty (see page 1 of this thread for the new law). coebul expands the issue to court mandated DNA retrieval and fingerprinting.

The relevant phrase from the Fifth Amendment:
"...nor shall [any person] be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself,... without due process of law"

The "birth" of workplace drug testing was the Presidential [Reagan] Executive Order 12564 in 1986 which established abstinence from illegal drug use - on or off duty - as a condition of federal employment.

Then in 1988 Congress passed the Drug-Free Workplace Act, which was implemented in Sec. 503, P.L. 100-71 and which made mandatory drug-testing of all federal civilian employess, some specified members of the uniformed services, and non-federal employees of contractors and service providers to the executive branch of government (did not apply to the judicial or legislative branches or the USPS).

Quickly many state and local governments followed suit, as did many private sector employers.

The main two Constitutional issues are in the Fourth and Fifth (extended to the states by the Fourteenth) Amendments, with the latter issue raised by scrutney and coebul.

SCOTUS has ruled on both issues, resulting in the following current Constitutional judgments:
- Mandatory drug testing is not unconstitutional.
- Producing urine samples constitutes a "search" under the Fourth Amendment.
- Testing ("search") must thus meet the "reasonableness" test.
- However we all have a fundamental right to privacy of our person and property.
- Therefore unnecessary or excessive testing can be challenged on constitutional grounds.
- LIkewise testing methods/procedures must respect our personal privacy, or be challenged on constitutional grounds.
- Indiscriminate release of test results is unconstitutional
.
- Most importantly, positive test results can not be used in subsequent criminal prosecutions without the employee's consent.
- Finally, If the basis for not hiring or the basis for terminating a person, or not providing or terminating "welfare," is based on a positive drug test result, the constitutional "due process" clause can be invoked, e.g. challenging the validity of the test results, person's right to respond, etc.

Florida's Governor's Executive Order mandating drug testing for all state employees is already in the courts (filed by ACLU).  I predict it will be ruled unconstitutional, i.e., not meet the tests summarized above.

The new law for cash welfare benefits is constitutional in my judgment, but I oppose in on the other grounds I've already posted,    

DNA retrieval and fingerprinting also fall within the above SCOTUS tests of constitutionality.  

I really like the world wide DNA banks being created; and the laws in many states which require DNA to be retrieved from all convicted felons.  Many cold cases are being solved, many criminals are being caught, and those unjustly convicted are being freed.
coebul

bieramar wrote:


Which round robin's us back to my initial opinion:
"My main objection is that this new law is more of a "blue law" attempting to restrict and conform all citizens/legal residents to others' religion-based morality than it is a fiscal cost-effective law."
Drug testing is not a moral issue.  You take public assistance, unemployment or any form of welfare accept ADC and you need to be required to take a drug test.



bieramar wrote:
Your opinion - that drug testing be a condition of receiving UI benefits - is exactly the morality-based social engineering effort to which I object.

Big Brother at his best.
This is not a morality issue.  I object to you using public funds to purchase drugs.  I object to you using drugs rather then looking for a job.  

That is not morality.  This is using public funds for illegal activity.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
This is not a morality issue. I object to you using public funds to purchase drugs. I object to you using drugs rather then looking for a job.

That is not morality. This is using public funds for illegal activity.


Illegal activities should be prosecuted IAW the rule of law.  

What does that have to do with drug testing at the taxpayers' expense?
coebul

bieramar wrote:
coebul wrote:
This is not a morality issue. I object to you using public funds to purchase drugs. I object to you using drugs rather then looking for a job.

That is not morality. This is using public funds for illegal activity.


Illegal activities should be prosecuted IAW the rule of law.

What does that have to do with drug testing at the taxpayers' expense?
There are many activities carried out at taxpayers expense.  Some I support and some I object to.  

Drug testing those that receive federal, state and local assistance should be subject to random drug testing.  In doing so you are proving beyond reasonable doubt you are ready/able to take an offered job and in other forms of assistance your are proving you are not spending assistance $$ on drugs.  Personally I don't care if you waste your life on drugs.  But not on my dime.  And if I have to pay a few $$ to insure your "clean" then so be it.  

If the rule of law can require drug testing for both public and private employees or as a condition of employment then it will support drug testing those on public assistance.
bieramar

Drug testing suspended for most FL state employees

The Associated Press
June 16, 2011

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. --  Gov. Rick Scott has suspended plans to implement an executive order mandating drug testing for all state employees.

In a June 10 memo to agency heads, Scott said only the Department of Corrections will move ahead with administering drug tests for employees, regardless of suspicion.

Scott issued his drug testing order March 22.
---
Source:
http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/0...g-testing-suspended-for-most.html

====
A small step back from a fascist Florida.

The mandatory testing of Dept. of Corrections personnel is rational and logical, and a constitutional proper use of executive power.
jasmine

bieramar wrote:
Drug testing suspended for most FL state employees

The Associated Press
June 16, 2011

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Gov. Rick Scott has suspended plans to implement an executive order mandating drug testing for all state employees.

In a June 10 memo to agency heads, Scott said only the Department of Corrections will move ahead with administering drug tests for employees, regardless of suspicion.

Scott issued his drug testing order March 22.
---
Source:
http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/0...g-testing-suspended-for-most.html

====
A small step back from a fascist Florida.

The mandatory testing of Dept. of Corrections personnel is rational and logical, and a constitutional proper use of executive power.


What State employees?  Most of them are unemployed
auntmartymoo

coebul wrote:
bieramar wrote:


Which round robin's us back to my initial opinion:
"My main objection is that this new law is more of a "blue law" attempting to restrict and conform all citizens/legal residents to others' religion-based morality than it is a fiscal cost-effective law."
Drug testing is not a moral issue. You take public assistance, unemployment or any form of welfare accept ADC and you need to be required to take a drug test.



bieramar wrote:
Your opinion - that drug testing be a condition of receiving UI benefits - is exactly the morality-based social engineering effort to which I object.

Big Brother at his best.
This is not a morality issue. I object to you using public funds to purchase drugs. I object to you using drugs rather then looking for a job.

That is not morality. This is using public funds for illegal activity.


Good points.

Bieramar, I think a person who manages to scrape up the money for illegal drugs should not be asking someone else to pay for his food.  It's a simple fairness issue.  I don't see where you've proven any religion-based morality component.  If he's got the money for drugs he coulda spent it on food...and my wallet coulda been left out of the transaction.
bieramar

auntmartymoo wrote:
Bieramar, I think a person who manages to scrape up the money for illegal drugs should not be asking someone else to pay for his food.

It's a simple fairness issue. I don't see where you've proven any religion-based morality component.
If he's got the money for drugs he coulda spent it on food...and my wallet coulda been left out of the transaction.


Nope - your wallet and every other Florida taxpayers wallet is IN the transaction of EVERY "welfare" recipient - because you reimburse all of them for the mandatory drug tests.

Check back to my June 2 post on page 1 of this thread.
auntmartymoo

Oh, please.  Don't dismiss me.  I read the whole thread before I posted in it.

You're the one missing the point.  People don't mind paying for the drug tests.  It makes them feel like the money they pay for food stamps & other welfare programs is being utilized with less fraud and waste.

And again, you have in no way linked my opinions to religion-based morality.
coebul

No drug test no assistance.  Works for me.
scrutney

Quote:
People don't mind paying for the drug tests.


i'd amend that to "most people don't mind" or even "some people don't mind."

being forced to take drug tests to receive government services is a total violation of the 5th amendment.

coebul

scrutney wrote:
Quote:
People don't mind paying for the drug tests.


i'd amend that to "most people don't mind" or even "some people don't mind."

being forced to take drug tests to receive government services is a total violation of the 5th amendment.

Pardon?  Well the drug test itself is a violation of the 5th.  But if a corporation can test for employment then the government can test for handouts.
bieramar

auntmartymoo wrote:
Oh, please. Don't dismiss me. I read the whole thread before I posted in it.

You're the one missing the point. People don't mind paying for the drug tests. It makes them feel like the money they pay for food stamps & other welfare programs is being utilized with less fraud and waste.


So your opinion is that most Florida taxpayers don't mind paying for the drug testing of all those people receiving "welfare" just to prevent the small percentage of drug users - who aren't smart enough to beat the drug testing - from receiving food for their kids?

Seriously?

You definitely know different Floridians than I know.
scrutney

coebul wrote:
scrutney wrote:
Quote:
People don't mind paying for the drug tests.


i'd amend that to "most people don't mind" or even "some people don't mind."

being forced to take drug tests to receive government services is a total violation of the 5th amendment.

Pardon? Well the drug test itself is a violation of the 5th. But if a corporation can test for employment then the government can test for handouts.


apples and oranges.
you lose your right to free speech as soon as you go to work.
well, you don't really but they can fire you for exercising it too vigorously.

however, being compelled to present evidence against yourself to the government to simply receive government services?

it's bogus.
it's bullshit.
it's the antithesis of what the constitution stands for.

"pee in this cup and you and your family can eat next week...maybe."

that's police state thinking.
joe stalin would be proud.
coebul

bieramar wrote:
auntmartymoo wrote:
Oh, please. Don't dismiss me. I read the whole thread before I posted in it.

You're the one missing the point. People don't mind paying for the drug tests. It makes them feel like the money they pay for food stamps & other welfare programs is being utilized with less fraud and waste.


So your opinion is that most Florida taxpayers don't mind paying for the drug testing of all those people receiving "welfare" just to prevent the small percentage of drug users - who aren't smart enough to beat the drug testing - from receiving food for their kids?

Seriously?

You definitely know different Floridians than I know.
Taxes are a part of being a citizen.  I am pretty sure if you polled those same Floridians they would want to reduce taxes by cutting some of the entitlements.  And if they understood that a $20 test would prevent druggies from sitting on their arses and eating, drinking and smoking/injecting/snorting illegal drugs they would rather save the $1,000s and pay for a drug test.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
Taxes are a part of being a citizen. I am pretty sure if you polled those same Floridians they would want to reduce taxes by cutting some of the entitlements. And if they understood that a $20 test would prevent druggies from sitting on their arses and eating, drinking and smoking/injecting/snorting illegal drugs they would rather save the $1,000s and pay for a drug test.


I don't think Floridians are that stupid.  Crunch the number in my June 2 post on page 1, and you'll find that expending $2,180,777 of Florida's taxpayers' money would in 2010 saved $1,016,487 cash payments which wouldn't have been paid to the drug-testing-positive mothers of minor children.

That's $1,164,290 of ALL taxpayers money to make the self-righteous feel good because they've punished those druggie mothers.

Oh, wait a minute!  The same law allows a designated non-drug user to get the money for the kids anyway!

Imposing one's moral prescriptions - religion-based or not - on the total taxpaying population is precisely what any true fiscal conservative should oppose.
scrutney

Quote:
Imposing one's moral prescriptions - religion-based or not - on the total taxpaying population is precisely what any true fiscal conservative should oppose.


well said.
and needless to say, i agree.
coebul

bieramar wrote:


Imposing one's moral prescriptions - religion-based or not - on the total taxpaying population is precisely what any true fiscal conservative should oppose.
Strawman argument.  Drug use is not ones moral prescription.  Drug use is illegal.   Imposing the law would be more appropriate.
scrutney

coebul wrote:
Imposing the law would be more appropriate.


and what would be even more appropriate is government staying the hell out of people's private lives.

what ever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?
coebul

scrutney wrote:
coebul wrote:
Imposing the law would be more appropriate.


and what would be even more appropriate is government staying the hell out of people's private lives.

what ever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?
2 separate issues.  You want to legalize drugs then you have a case.  But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs.  Same with unemployment.  You can't get a job when your loaded then you can't get unemployment.  

beiramar seems to think the tax payer will be upset.  Well? Who pays that assistance or unemployment.    

You want the government out of our lives so do I.  So stay off public assistance.  Or is this type of government involvement ok?  So would that be  "staying the hell out of people's private lives" except when I want something from the government?  

Innocent until proven guilty?  The drug test will prove innocence or guilt.  You had a better argument with the 5th.  But then we are not talking about a crime.  Public assistance is voluntary.  So is unemployment for that matter.  You don't have to take it...
Phred

Quote:
But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs.

Innocent until proven guilty?  The drug test will prove innocence or guilt.


I think I understand the point you're making Coebul, but I kinda disagree with the way you're explaining it.

Drug test only show that at some time in the past couple of months the person may have used some form of illegal drug.

As incriminating as that is, it doesn't show that welfare money was spent for the drug.  Nor does it show that mommy is a habitual druggie.

It also doesn't mean that failing a drug test is ineligibility for welfare.  The state merely appoints an authorized representative (family member or friend) to receive the money for them.

Drug testing for welfare applicants/recipients has been tried in the past and failed and for that reason alone I'm against imposing those regulations again.
coebul

Phred wrote:
Quote:
But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs.

Innocent until proven guilty? The drug test will prove innocence or guilt.


I think I understand the point you're making Coebul, but I kinda disagree with the way you're explaining it.

Drug test only show that at some time in the past couple of months the person may have used some form of illegal drug.
Phred this is not correct. Some drugs leave the body in a matter of days. Overs such as Pot stay in the body for days weeks an months but in different concentrations.

Phred wrote:
As incriminating as that is, it doesn't show that welfare money was spent for the drug. Nor does it show that mommy is a habitual druggie.
Your saying you smoke crack last night and take a drug test this morning you won't be able to tell? I doubt this.

Phred wrote:
It also doesn't mean that failing a drug test is ineligibility for welfare. The state merely appoints an authorized representative (family member or friend) to receive the money for them.
Which is equally wrong. Are they drug testing those recipients?

Phred wrote:
Drug testing for welfare applicants/recipients has been tried in the past and failed and for that reason alone I'm against imposing those regulations again.
Could it be the application of the policy is faulty.

Your post only covers welfare. I assume that is ADC and food stamps. What about housing subsidies (I assume your county has assisted housing)? What about unemployment. If you fail a drug test for unemployment you would fail the pre-employment screening. Should these people get unemployment?
bieramar

Re-posting from page 1 of this thread -- the Florida law effective today, which is being discussed by the Florida residents posting here and by me:

---
[The new Florida law requiring applicants for] Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) under the Temporary Assistance to Needy Family (TANF) program to get drug tested, is getting world wide attention in the media.

Basic parameters for TANF/TCA
in Florida eff. July 1
- Funded 90% by federal block grant, 10% Florida
- Gross family income 185% of federal poverty level to be eligible
- Lifetime cumulative total of 48 months
- U.S. citizen or legal alien resident
- Individuals convicted of drug trafficking are not eligible
- Must satisfy work requirements established in federal law
- Applicants consent to being drug screened as a condition of eligibility
- When ordered to be tested, the adult pays for the test (approx. $10 for preliminary, and $25 for 2nd confirmatory if first is positive)
- If tests negative, recipients will be reimbursed in cash for what they paid

- Recipients prior to July 1, 2011 not subject to drug screening
- New recipients on/after July 1, 2011 can refuse to be tested
- Adults will be disqualified from receiving further TCA benefits if they refuse to submit to a drug screen or confirmatory test; or they test positive for drugs as a result of a confirmation test
- Failure of the 2nd (confirmation) tests makes the adult ineligible for cash for 12 months; or 6 months if they complete a licensed substance abuse treatment program and test negative
- Emancipated teen parents are considered adults for the purpose of this law
- Those adult and teen parents with minor children who are denied cash for flunking the drug screen can designate someone else to receive the cash payments for the kids.
Background and DCF estimates

- From January 1999 to May 2001, a
pilot project was accomplished in Jacksonville and parts of Putnam County to drug screen and drug test applicants for TANF. During the project, 8,797 applicants or recipients were tested, and 335 applicants tested positive for a controlled substance; total cost of the pilot project was $2.7 million.
A Florida State University researcher under contract to evaluate the pilot program did not recommend continuation or statewide expansion of the project, as very little difference was found in employment and earnings between those who tested positive versus those who tested negative.

- In 2010 in Florida there were 113,346 total recipients at some point during the year, with an average monthly cash payment of $236. In FY 2010-2011 the appropriation of TANF funds to support temporary cash assistance in Florida was $211,115,965.

DCF estimates that between 170-340 people (based on current caseloads of 113,346 per annum) would test positive as a result of a drug screen.

Obviously the major beneficiaries will be the private sector drug screening companies - with the Florida and U.S. taxpayers ultimately picking up the tab for all but a small minority of the tests; and paying for all the additional administrative hours worked by state workers associated with the testing program.
--- end re-post ---

And as later noted by Phred and myself IF a parent or guardian tests positive, a relative or friend is appointed to receive the "welfare" funds, thus NO TAX DOLLARS are "saved" anyway.

The LEOs and State's Attorneys continue to pursue and prosecute drug users.  This law is a waste of taxpayers money, benefiting no one but the drug testing companies.
coebul

bieramar wrote:
And as later noted by Phred and myself IF a parent or guardian tests positive, a relative or friend is appointed to receive the "welfare" funds, thus NO TAX DOLLARS are "saved" anyway.
And this is one flaw in the law.  Test positive loose assistance for a prescribed period of time.   As you noted earlier TAX DOLLARS ARE being saved.

From above.  
bieramar wrote:
Florida's taxpayers' money would in 2010 saved $1,016,487 cash payments


Suspending payments to relatives and friends would save even more.  The problem is not the law but the policy with in the law.  

bieramar wrote:
The LEOs and State's Attorneys continue to pursue and prosecute drug users.  This law is a waste of taxpayers money, benefiting no one but the drug testing companies.
LEO are but one aspect of the war on drugs.  

This has nothing to do with LEO.  This is how public assistance is administered and eligibility.  For LEO to be involved results would have to be turned over the LEO and as we all know this would be unconstitutional under the 4th amendment.  

Another point that has been glassed over is the effect on national tax payers.  Most state and local welfare has ties to the federal government for some of it's funding.  This policy should be expanded to include all 50 states.  This could be accomplished via HHS and applied similar to how "right turn on red" was applied.  That is the states change the laws or risk loosing federal funds..  

Florida is paving the way to removing druggies from the welfare roles.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
bieramar wrote:
And as later noted by Phred and myself IF a parent or guardian tests positive, a relative or friend is appointed to receive the "welfare" funds, thus NO TAX DOLLARS are "saved" anyway.


As you noted earlier TAX DOLLARS ARE being saved.

From above.
bieramar wrote:
Florida's taxpayers' money would in 2010 saved $1,016,487 cash payments


Another point that has been glassed over is the effect on national tax payers. Most state and local welfare has ties to the federal government for some of it's funding.


SAVED?  What I wrote was "expending $2,180,777 of Florida's taxpayers' money would in 2010 saved $1,016,487 cash payments which wouldn't have been paid to the drug-testing-positive mothers of minor children."

Subtract and you see that to "save" the $1,016,487 it cost the remainder of $1,164,290 of ALL taxpayers money to do the testing.  That's a NET LOSS to the Florida taxpayers.

Simple arithmetic, and you
quote the "saved" out of context? - that's more than "spin," that's  outright misleading misinformation.

And even that $1,016,487 isn't "saved" as I also pointed out with
"Oh, wait a minute! The same law allows a designated non-drug user to get the money for the kids anyway!"

I've twice posted that the funding is 90% by federal taxpayers block grant, and 10% Florida taxpayers, which I don't consider glassing (or even glossing) over.
scrutney

coebul wrote:
scrutney wrote:
coebul wrote:
Imposing the law would be more appropriate.


and what would be even more appropriate is government staying the hell out of people's private lives.

what ever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?
2 separate issues. You want to legalize drugs then you have a case. But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs. Same with unemployment. You can't get a job when your loaded then you can't get unemployment.



lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?

but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.

and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.

nope...i stand by what i said.
it's bullshit coe.
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)
coebul

Scrutney wrote:
lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?

but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.
Yeah you said this earlier.  So?  Be innocent.  But to get public assistance take a drug test.  You won't be charged if you fail.  Go to a charity and listen to the preaching.  Don't want to listen to that crap don't eat the food.  Same deal.  Don't want to prove you are ready to go to work that's fine don't take the assistance.   That goes for unemployment, housing assistance the whole enchilada.    

Scrutney wrote:
and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.
Yeah right!!! Let's not forget.  Oh wait the chances are he/she didn't any income tax seeing as how almost 40% of the voting population doesn't pay a dime of income tax.   What a joke.  Tax payers on welfare...  Good one.  

Scrutney wrote:
nope...i stand by what i said.
it's bullshit coe.
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)
What ever!  bieramar will be just as wrong as you!  The courts have upheld the right of employers to require a drug test to work.  What makes you think they will strike down this law?
Phred

Quote:
Drug test only show that at some time in the past couple of months the person may have used some form of illegal drug.

Phred this is not correct.  Some drugs leave the body in a matter of days.  Overs such as Pot stay in the body for days weeks an months but in different concentrations.


Geez Coebul ... you've been arguing with Bieramar too long.  "some time in the past couple of months" is a generality which includes "a matter of days" and "in the body for days, weeks and months".  

Quote:
As incriminating as that is, it doesn't show that welfare money was spent for the drug.  Nor does it show that mommy is a habitual druggie.

Your saying you smoke crack last night and take a drug test this morning you won't be able to tell?  I doubt this.


No, not what I said at all.

You, however, seem to be under the impression that a failed drug test would prevent welfare money from being spent for drugs.  It won't.  

Quote:
It also doesn't mean that failing a drug test is ineligibility for welfare.  The state merely appoints an authorized representative (family member or friend) to receive the money for them.

Which is equally wrong.  Are they drug testing those recipients?


We disagree.  That's the exact approach that should be taken.  If mommy's doing the drugs while receiving money for her and the kids, remove mommy from the grant but continue the money for the kids and, at the same time, remove mommy's control over the money.

Are the authorized representatives being tested also?  No clue.  Does this new, ill fated law require it?  

Quote:
Drug testing for welfare applicants/recipients has been tried in the past and failed and for that reason alone I'm against imposing those regulations again.

Could it be the application of the policy is faulty.


Good question.  They were drug testing welfare applicants and now they want to do it again, even though it failed in the past and it was recommended that the testing be stopped.

As far as I know the methodology is the same now as it was then.  

Quote:
Your post only covers welfare.


True ... because that was the particular topic of discussion at the time.  Enter whatever government assistance agency name you wish and the result will more than likely be the same.  Welfare just happens to be the agency I know a little about.
auntmartymoo

scrutney wrote:
Quote:
People don't mind paying for the drug tests.


i'd amend that to "most people don't mind" or even "some people don't mind."

being forced to take drug tests to receive government services is a total violation of the 5th amendment.


Yes, I should have been more specific.  Some.  Some people don't mind.

Nonetheless... You're talking about "services" while I'm talking about "handouts."  Very different things, in my opinion.  

Also, you're talking about "force" and I'm talking about "choice."

No one is being barred from applying for a social security card unless they can pass a drug test, are they?  Being denied admission to a state park?  Being denied a driver's license or ID card?  

We're not talking about the government randomly forcing someone to submit to a drug test.

We're talking about someone exercising their own free will by applying for a handout.  A handout for which a person must qualify.  A handout that has income requirements.  A handout that has a drug-free requirement.  There is absolutely no "force" in that scenario.  Tons of choices and free will are involved, but force, no.
jasmine

[quote="scrutney:5194"][quote="coebul:5169"][quote="scrutney:5160"][quote="coebul:5159"] Imposing the law would be more appropriate.[/quote]

[color=blue]and what would be even more appropriate is government staying the hell out of people's private lives.

what ever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?[/color][/quote]2 separate issues. You want to legalize drugs then you have a case. But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs. Same with unemployment. You can't get a job when your loaded then you can't get unemployment.

[/quote]

[color=blue]lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?

but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.

and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.

nope...i stand by what i said.
it's bullshit coe.
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)[/color][/quote]
jasmine

jasmine wrote:
scrutney wrote:
coebul wrote:
scrutney wrote:
coebul wrote:
Imposing the law would be more appropriate.


and what would be even more appropriate is government staying the hell out of people's private lives.

what ever happened to the concept of innocent until proven guilty?
2 separate issues. You want to legalize drugs then you have a case. But as long as they are illegal then you as the recipient of public assistance should prove your not spending your assistance on drugs. Same with unemployment. You can't get a job when your loaded then you can't get unemployment.



lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?

but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.

and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.

nope...i stand by what i said.
it's bullshit coe.
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)
coebul

jasmine wrote:

lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?
This is not a court of law.  This is a handout for those on public assistance.  No one is going to go to court.  But the courts have held drug testing for employment as legal.  If that is true then what is so wrong with proving your clean while taking public assistance.  

jasmine wrote:
but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.
No!  He has to demonstrate he is not taking drugs.  

jasmine wrote:
and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.
No not ostensibly!  The services he/she is receiving is funded by tax dollars.

jasmine wrote:
nope...i stand by what i said.
And I stand by what I said.  
jasmine wrote:
it's bullshit coe.
It is the law.

jasmine wrote:
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)
[/quote]Ridicules!  It is the law and it will be upheld.  Get over it!
jasmine

Not sure why, but the post by Jasmine you responded to Coe, was not me.  I did not post anything today, so not sure why the post was attributed to me.  Is there anyway to find out where this post came from?
jasmine

coebul wrote:
jasmine wrote:

lemme see...if i'm innocent until proven guilty then what the hell am i taking the drug test for in the first place?
This is not a court of law. This is a handout for those on public assistance. No one is going to go to court. But the courts have held drug testing for employment as legal. If that is true then what is so wrong with proving your clean while taking public assistance.

jasmine wrote:
but the reverse is true.
the poor son of a bitch that has to take the drug test has to prove his innocence.
No! He has to demonstrate he is not taking drugs.

jasmine wrote:
and let's not forget that the services he is to receive if he passes the test(or denied if he fails...i.e. benefits) were ostensibly funded with his tax dollars when he was a productive member of society.
No not ostensibly! The services he/she is receiving is funded by tax dollars.

jasmine wrote:
nope...i stand by what i said.
And I stand by what I said.
jasmine wrote:
it's bullshit coe.
It is the law.

jasmine wrote:
and to my mind a violation of the 5th and 14th amendments.(and probably a few more but i'll leave that for bier to sort out)
Ridicules! It is the law and it will be upheld. Get over it![/quote]


All of the above posted by Jasmine, was not me.  Not sure who is doing this, but I would like it to stop.
bieramar

SOMEBODY somewhere at 11:57 p.m. last night (Saturday) attempted to respond the the previous comments -- realized their formating error, and posted a corrected response on the stroke of midnight.

Either someone snuck onto jasmine's computer, or jasmine's state of consciousness was altered, or her memory wiped clean, or somebody hacked in ------ hmmmmmmmm, who's in the news for hacking recently?

[or maybe Guido got into the sauce?]
scrutney

bieramar wrote:
SOMEBODY somewhere at 11:57 p.m. last night (Saturday) attempted to respond the the previous comments -- realized their formating error, and posted a corrected response on the stroke of midnight.

Either someone snuck onto jasmine's computer, or jasmine's state of consciousness was altered, or her memory wiped clean, or somebody hacked in ------ hmmmmmmmm, who's in the news for hacking recently?

[or maybe Guido got into the sauce?]


realizing that this was a credibility issue of herculean proportion, integrity guy sprang into action.

"passwords? don't need no steenking passwords" he sternly intoned. "integrity guy will face down any opponent, smash any fire wall, become the ghost in any machine, going so far as to only refer to himself in the third person, in his ceaseless quest for credibility"



jasmine

bieramar wrote:
SOMEBODY somewhere at 11:57 p.m. last night (Saturday) attempted to respond the the previous comments -- realized their formating error, and posted a corrected response on the stroke of midnight.

Either someone snuck onto jasmine's computer, or jasmine's state of consciousness was altered, or her memory wiped clean, or somebody hacked in ------ hmmmmmmmm, who's in the news for hacking recently?

[or maybe Guido got into the sauce?]


Twasn't me, swear it.  I was asleep by 9:30 p.m. last night, and my dogs can't type (not yet anyway).  So, not sure how that post got there under my name.  It's just a little disconcerting.  

The real Jazz
mike

Thank God they weren't Mike ... or, we weren't Mike
tsiya

Jasmine when is the last time you scanned for malicious software? Do you hsve Spybot, Spyware Blaster or another anti  spyware program?

You've got to have something, you can have your bank passwords and other valuable data stolen. Antivirus won't always do it, you need specific software.
jasmine

tsiya wrote:
Jasmine when is the last time you scanned for malicious software? Do you hsve Spybot, Spyware Blaster or another anti spyware program?

You've got to have something, you can have your bank passwords and other valuable data stolen. Antivirus won't always do it, you need specific software.


Yes Tsiya, I have 2 anti spyware programs, that I had set up by a reputable computer company in St Augustine, and as far as I know, they work fine.  I also change passwords periodically on bank and other valuable data.  So, I wasn't drunk, didn't lose my memory, dogs don't type, so I am baffled as to how the post got there.  Thanks for asking.

The Real Jazz
tsiya

If you aren't scanning you can't be sure they're working and nothing is 100%  effective anyway..
bieramar

October 12, 2011
1,588 welfare applicants decline to take drug test

MIAMI (AP) - Less than one percent of welfare applicants tested positive for drugs since the state began requiring the screening in July, according to figures released by state officials Tuesday. But because nearly 1,600 applicants declined to take the test, it's difficult to draw conclusions from the results.

Thirty-two applicants failed the test, 7,028 passed and 1,597 didn't take it, according figures from the Department of Children and Families. A majority of the positive tests were for marijuana. Meanwhile, a federal judge in Orlando is mulling a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union calling the measure unconstitutional.

Proponents of the law have suggested applicants would be deterred because they knew they would test positive, meaning the law is preventing taxpayer funds from being spent on drugs. Critics say applicants may not have taken the test because they couldn't afford the $25-$35 test fee or didn't have easy access to a testing facility. People who decline to take the test aren't required to explain why.

"Very few people have failed the test and we've placed an unreasonable search on thousands of people who are facing very difficult times in their lives," said Democratic Sen. Nan Rich.

There are more than 350 test sites throughout the state, but a handful of rural counties have none.

DCF began testing applicants in mid-July after Gov. Rick Scott signed the controversial bill, which has sparked national debate.

The ACLU filed a lawsuit last month against the state, calling the tests unconstitutional for violating the random search and seizure clause. The ACLU, which is suing on behalf of a Navy veteran and single father who is finishing college, says the law unfairly stigmatizes the poor.

State officials said it's unclear if any money has been saved because of the testing. Scott's office did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

Under the Temporary Assistance For Needy Families program, the state gives $180 a month for one person or $364 for a family of four. During his campaign, Scott said the measure would save $77 million, but it's unclear how he arrived at those figures.
"The department's intent has never been on the dollars involved...we believe this will help families stay together and achieve independence," DCF spokesman Joe Follick said.
He said the cost for reimbursing applicants for the test has been absorbed into the agency's current budget and is not costing additional taxpayer money.

Those who test positive for drugs are ineligible for the cash assistance for one year, though passing a drug course can cut that period in half. If they fail a second time, they are ineligible for three years.

A third party designated by the family can then sign up for the funds so the money is still passed onto the children. But that person also must be drug tested and fill out lengthy paperwork, which can delay a family from getting money for 30-60 days.

Lawmakers in more than two-dozen states have proposed drug-testing recipients of welfare or other government assistance, but the ACLU said Florida was the first to enact a law since Michigan tried more than a decade ago. Michigan's random drug testing program for welfare recipients lasted five weeks in 1999 before it was halted by a judge, kicking off a four-year legal battle that ended with an appeals court ruling it unconstitutional.
----

Source: http://staugustine.com/news/local...applicants-decline-take-drug-test
bieramar

School districts likely to ignore 'inspirational message' law  
 
By BRANDON LARRABEE
News Service of Florida
June 30, 2012

TALLAHASSEE - A controversial law that would allow student prayer at mandatory school events could have limited impact even after it goes into effect Sunday, both supporters and opponents of the "inspirational message" bill say.

The measure, signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott in March, paves the way for local school districts to approve policies allowing students to decide whether to have another student deliver an inspirational message at school events.

But districts aren't likely to approve any of the proposals because of the threat of costly litigation.  "On our advice, they are going nowhere with it," said Wayne Blanton, executive director of the Florida School Boards Association.

Blanton said only one school district in the state - Clay County - has even considered implementing one of the policies, and decided not to. He said the measure was "a political bill" aimed more at the November elections than the actual policy.

Even one of the bill's sponsors, Rep. Charles Van Zant, R-Keystone Heights, said he didn't expect school boards to leap into action right away. But Van Zant said he has heard from districts that are interested in the idea and might look into it early next year -- after the November vote.

"I don't think they"re going to do much of anything simply because there's so much electioneering going on," Van Zant said.

Looming over the entire bill is the threat of legal action against any district that tries to implement it. When Scott signed the bill, the ACLU of Florida, the Anti-Defamation League and Americans United for the Separation of Church and State each separately issued warnings to local school districts that going ahead with a policy could subject them to legal challenges.

The Santa Rosa County School District recently spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in a costly series of lawsuits over the role of religion in public schools, sparked in part by prayers at school events.

Van Zant said districts shouldn't be deterred.  "I told them the ACLU is going to threaten to sue them," he said. "Don't worry about it."

But in a statement issued Friday, ACLU of Florida Executive Director Howard Simon said he didn't expect many districts to follow Van Zant's advice.

"Fortunately, Florida educators are likely to be smarter than legislators," Simon said. "I expect few if any school districts to be enticed by the Legislatures invitation to adopt an unconstitutional policy and end up in inevitable litigation -- and spend scarce tax dollars on lawyers in the courtroom rather than children in the classroom."
---
Source, and feedback comments:
http://staugustine.com/news/local...-ignore-inspirational-message-law
===

Thank God for the ACLU.  

Can't you just see/hear Hare Krishnas chanting or "Inshallah"s being interjected right before the National Anthem?

If "it's the principle of the thing" is a standard,  voting out any politician who voted for this law "on principle" is the way to go.

There's more than enough bigotry around in human society, legal pandering to religious bigots is not needed.

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