Stimulating Prisoners One Check at a Time

Today we find out more great use of tax payer money. It turns out the federal government has sent about 3,900 economic stimulus payments of $250 each this spring to prison inmates. The checks were part of the massive economic recovery package approved by Congress and President Barack Obama in February. The check was supposed to go to about 52 million Social Security recipients; railroad retirees and those receiving Supplemental Security Income were eligible for the one-time checks. The total was about $13 billion in stimulus payments so only about $425,000 was sent to inmates. We find that 2200 of the check went to inmates who were not in prison when the check was being processed. That will make you feel better of course this means 1700 people were prisoners in a detention system somewhere in the US but the Social Security Administration thought they could use a little cash. Most of these checks were caught at the prison and returned. This also means we need to have an audit to examine whether checks incorrectly went to inmates, dead people, fugitive felons or people living outside the US. If that was not enough, seeing your hard earned taxpayer supplied stimulus money being hard at work. The $787 billion economic recovery package included $2 million for the inspector general to oversee the provisions handled by the Social Security Administration. They have put money in the budget to watch and then audit the people who gave out the money. If this was not real you would think it had to be made up, who would stand for this?

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