RI could ban welfare payments for liquor, lottery

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Legislation long proposed by Rhode Island Republicans to ban the use of public cash assistance on alcohol, lottery tickets and casino gambling is now moving forward under a Democratic banner.

Rep. Arthur Corvese, a North Providence Democrat, is proposing to prohibit welfare recipients from using electronic benefit cards at liquor stores, casinos and adult entertainment facilities.

His bill would also make it a crime for liquor store owners and other affected businesses to accept the cards.

The House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday recommended its passage.

Rep. Patricia Morgan, a West Warwick Republican, says the legislation is a slight alteration of a bill she’s proposed for years.

She called it partisan antics for the state’s dominant Democrats to take credit but she says she will likely support it.

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