Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Louisiana Walmart To Pay For Food Stamp Rampage

A Wal Mart in Louisiana had its shelves cleared of food during an EBT outage that occurred this weekend.  According to local news station KSLA News 12, the Wal Mart handled the outage by accepting the EBT cards, also known as Food Stamps, without limits.  Once word spread that Wal Mart was accepting the EBT cards without a limit, Food Stamp recipients filled their carts and emptied the store's shelves. 

However, once the EBT system came back online and balances could be confirmed, shoppers abandoned filled shopping carts in the store.

But taxpayers will only be on the hook for $50 per EBT card, according to the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS).

"DCFS has emergency procedures in its contract with Xerox for events like Saturday’s outage. Those procedures directed retailers who chose not to suspend all EBT transactions to call Xerox and receive authorization for up to $50 in purchases for individual clients," DCFS said on Monday.

"Some retailers chose not to follow that emergency process and continued serving customers, saving transactions until connectivity was restored. Once the transactions are run (in the order in which they occurred), these businesses are reimbursed only for the amount of the client's available benefits. The retailers are responsible for any additional amount spent over the eligible benefits. Transaction attempts over the available balance on the EBT cards are returned as non-sufficient funds. According to the Federal Food and Nutrition Service, which is responsible for the SNAP program, EBT cards cannot carry a negative balance."