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Posted on Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 6:13 p.m.

Four-year limit on welfare benefits could affect 600-900 families in Washtenaw County

By Ryan J. Stanton

State Rep. David Rutledge, D-Superior Township, responded with concern today to news that Gov. Rick Snyder has signed into law a new cap on state cash assistance benefits.

The bill was signed Tuesday, and the limit takes effect Oct. 1.

About 12,600 families are expected to be removed from welfare programs next month under the new 48-month lifetime cap, including about 25,000 to 30,000 children. Rutledge said an estimated 600 to 900 families in Washtenaw County will be affected.

"It is certainly no secret that I believe this change runs counter to the best interest of families with children in our community, and in our state as a whole," Rutledge said in a statement.

"Particularly given the fact that Michigan is still recovering from an economic crisis, and statewide employment is stagnant, my fear is that this limit will only hurt those families already struggling to make ends meet," he said.

David_Rutledge_ headshot_2010.jpg

David Rutledge

Rutledge is calling attention to the state's Job Navigator Program, a service established by the Michigan Department of Human Services to help those whose assistance will end next month.

The program will match individuals affected by the new limit with "job navigators" who will serve as mentors and assist with job searches and other transitional issues.

Rutledge, who registered to volunteer as a job navigator earlier this week, said he strongly urges community members — especially those who advocated for the new welfare cap — to consider signing up for the program to help families who will lose their assistance.

Rutledge also said residents interested in learning about food assistance and other support programs available in the Ypsilanti area can contact him by calling toll-free at 855-347-8054 or by emailing him at

Snyder released a statement after signing the new welfare reform law on Tuesday, saying the four-year lifetime limit on cash assistance brings Michigan in line with other states and ensures limited resources are available to those truly in need.

“We are returning cash assistance to its original intent as a transitional program to help families while they work toward self-sufficiency and also preserving our state’s integral safety net for families most in need,” Snyder said.

“Affected recipients are able-bodied and have had at least four — some as long as 14 or more — years to transition to independence.”

Snyder's office noted the state will allow exemptions for those who have a disability and are unable to work. Recipients who care for a disabled spouse or child, those who are 65 or older and do not qualify for Social Security benefits or the benefits are too low, or those involved in domestic violence situations that involve law enforcement also may be temporarily exempted.

Snyder's office said the new law also eliminates a disincentive to working or seeking opportunities to earn more. To initially qualify for cash assistance, a family of three can earn no more than $814 per month, with a maximum cash assistance benefit of $492 a month.

Once they’ve qualified, they now will be able to earn more income — up to $1,164 — and still receive state help, Snyder's office said.

In addition to welfare reform, the Michigan House on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved bridge card reform legislation that is being hailed by state Rep. Mark Ouimet, R-Scio Township, as a step forward in reducing fraud and abuse.

"Michigan's food assistance program is an essential safety net for residents who are struggling to get by, and any abuse of the system means less help for the people who truly need it," Ouimet said in a statement this afternoon. "These are common-sense measures that will ultimately allow the state to use taxpayer dollars more efficiently."

House Bills 4721-23 prohibit the use of bridge cards to purchase lottery tickets, alcohol, or tobacco; ban bridge card use at casinos; help remove bridge card recipients who have outstanding arrest warrants and require DHS to review incarceration records monthly and deactivate the bridge card for anyone jail.

The bills now go to the Senate for consideration.

Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for Reach him at or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to's e-mail newsletters.


Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sat, Sep 10, 2011 : 2:30 p.m.

Shep wrote: "These folks need a voucher for the nearest moving truck rental agency." Yeah, in a state that is ground zero for the collapse of the nation's economy, it is the fault of the poor and the unemployed that they don't have good jobs. And clearly it will help the state's economy if we get even more people to move out, thereby glutting the housing market even more than it already is, driving down property values for all concerned (homeowners, apartment owners, commercial property owners). All of which will deprive the state of badly needed revenue for infrastructure, K-12 schools, community colleges and universities, and police and fire protection, which will, of course, make things BETTER. Right? Such is Michelle Bachmann/Ron Paul/Rick Perry/Teaparty logic. Good Night and Good Luck

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Mon, Sep 12, 2011 : 8:16 p.m.

And as I said, ya got me. Those RepubliKans love the social welfare state. Right? Good Night and Good Luck

Not from around here

Mon, Sep 12, 2011 : 2:27 p.m.

And B). where is your links backing up your charcterization? You say a lot of things but, sadly, just can't back them up with facts...what do we call that again...

Not from around here

Mon, Sep 12, 2011 : 2:25 p.m.

A. It's republican. If you use republican your Designating Facist. If your calling me a facist that name calling and is supposed to be deleted by the moderator.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Sep 11, 2011 : 11:39 p.m.

Ya got me, NFAH. All of those RepubliKans just love those social welfare programs and support them endlessly. Good Night and Good Luck

Not from around here

Sun, Sep 11, 2011 : 6:42 p.m.

I was not aware that Michelle Backmann, Ron Paul, Rick Perry or any other member of the Tea Party movement had any direct effect, or made any public coments regarding thi sdecision. Please by all means post the links. Or we're you just making an off topic dig at these people?


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 2:53 a.m.

These folks need a voucher for the nearest moving truck rental agency. Michigan can no longer afford to play mommy to a class of people who refuse to participate in society while enjoying benefits paid for by the hard work of taxpayers. We've finally elected a governor who has the courage to revisit the traditional need for a public safety net for those who need help getting back on their feet while rejecting the notion that welfare collection is a vocation in itself. Too bad Ann Arbor voters are unable to electing intelligent, level headed politicians to the Mayor or City Council offices.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 8:31 p.m.

This is LONG overdue, thank you Governor Snyder.! Four years is plently of time to find a job and I bet the people that have been on welfare for 4+ years, that are now losing it, will mysteriosly find a job, now. I have a struggling daughter whose worthless ex-husband does not support their 3 children, she works fulltime and has all parental responsibilities and can barely make it. She gets almost no help, yet certain individuals, her ex is one, sit on there behinds all day living off the taxpayers. I would actually support a 2 year limit. Studies show that when a person is about to be taken off assistance, they miraculously find a way to support themselves. Now I hope Governor Snyder revamps the unemployment system...I know many who have abused it for years! People need to get out of the mind set of "someone owes me something" the long run working for what you have is very satisfying!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 7:51 p.m.

Thank you Rick Snyder. This should have been done along time ago. There is to many people abusing the system. I'm tired of working and paying for cheaters to abuse the system. I'm all for disabled people. Another abuse is all these women having kids and our taxes taking care of them. The children can't help it but come on 4-6 kids and they keep getting more welfare!!! I say 1 mistake then after that you know how you got pregnant go to planned parenthood for free birth control and be responsible for your sex life. Don't make me responsible in my taxes because you refuse to be responsible, also if they can't supply the daddy's name then they don't get welfare. Michigan is one of the biggest handouts I know of. Also thank you for taking the college students off welfare. College is a choice to go to, my taxes shouldn't be paying you and giving you money for your groceries. We are not wealthy by any means but we paid for our own kids to go to college, not by help from the state

Original Ann Arborite

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 6 p.m.

More required educational programs. There r still ppl who can't read, write, or even use a computer receiving assistance. Some ppl with long and short money r so out of touch with reality. Make big business participate in these educational programs with all their tax breaks etc. Focus groups of citizens-those currently or in the past that have received assistance 2 address their actual needs. I can tell u right now, ppl r saying get out and get a job, well, lol, while working-how do u pay 4 childcare? 4 ummm let's say 2 children... That will more than likely be half of ur income 4 the month! Then, there is rent, food, clothing, transportation, utilities-school supplies; if a baby or school-aged children involved imagine the needs at that point... Depending on how much money u make u will not qualify 4 assistance programs! So basically u r between a rock and a hard place. I work everyday, I don't make a lot but, I am def not opposed 2 helping the less fortunate.

Original Ann Arborite

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 8:30 p.m.

Yes, ummm actually, I do have children, and my struggles r not everyone's business but, I can def say I can understand the hardships of some but obviously u cannot. I live with an open mind (as I thought many A2 residents did also). I am surprised at some of the individuals considered 2 b my neighbors... What about the Job Navigator Program, why don't some of those in disagreement go ahead and volunteer? Make sure ur money is being handled properly lol Get ur hands dirty, this is so much deeper than many I don't like ppl abusing the system either-save 4 the ppl who actually do need help!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 6:37 p.m.

"how do u pay 4 childcare? 4 ummm let's say 2 children... " When you can answer that question you'll be ready to have kids.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:19 p.m.

We also had friends on the WIC program & they accepted things that were free even though they didn't use them, because they were free or gave them to other family members. THIS IS WRONG.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:30 p.m.

4 years is long enough to obtain training in other vocational areas to find a job. Granted, the jobs may not be in Michigan, but if the State is willing to give you 4 years of assistance to re-invent yourself, you can certainly find a job somewhere in the country. There are many other places where jobs are plentiful. I've had to move a few times. I'd do it again if I necessary. So get off your duffs and be productive members of society.

buck rogers

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

thanks for the reply donbee, i did'nt see it before i re-posted...

buck rogers

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:52 p.m.

is this just for cash assistance? or does this include food also? children are starving out here even with working parents! LIVIN OFF RAMEN NOODLES, BEEF JERKEY & SPAM! now thats bad! jobs pay low wages, and only offer part time hours at best in my area. ive been going to school so i can get a better job. but thats not feeding my children either, not at the moment. ive never asked for cash assistance, but my children need food assistance, and medicare. untill i finish school and get a career, my wife & I plus the four children under our roof, are on a struggle. i dont have a car because when i lost a good paying job due to economic times, the township made me sell it, and fined me 3,400$ for having it in my driveway with out of date tags. hence i could'nt afford tags due to losing my job, and didnt want to drive illegally! nothing was wrong with the car either. now that i do have job opportunities,(even low wage jobs) i have no car to get there. (and the bus does not run where i need to go) i agree with the drug testing all the way!!! but, do not take food from childrens mouths when their parents are really trying! me and my wife do not walk the ave and sell our bridge card food assistance for drugs, we do not do drugs, and we never needed food assistance untill the economy took a dump on us, (lost a great job when this happened due to cut back over economy)! now im forced to walk or ride a bike a long distance with a meniscus tear in my left knee. alot of people are in my position!! my sister, and her husband both work everyday. plus she goes to school, but with the low wages they make, and after high gas prices and utilities, they are having a very hard time keeping food on the table for their three children!! they also do not do drugs!

Not from around here

Wed, Sep 14, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

Shepard who am I to judge. Just a regular guy with regular feelings. Several commentors have gotten way out of control with snide or snippy camments or name calling, I'm just Hopeing they would change....

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Tue, Sep 13, 2011 : 9:40 p.m.

ROFL Just too funny!! GN&GL


Mon, Sep 12, 2011 : 11:14 p.m.

You're not from around here so how do you know what insults people who are from around here? You're an outsider - a foreigner, an alien - not to be trusted. I'd have to respect Ed to be insulted by his opinion so we're fine. LOL

Not from around here

Sun, Sep 11, 2011 : 6:32 p.m.

ERMG-calling some one a simpleton and closeminded does not add to the conversation and is insulting. Please be mindful of your posts

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sat, Sep 10, 2011 : 2:57 p.m.

Thanks, Shep, for your erudite and thoughtful reply. Good to see you have your typically open mind on this subject as you do with others. Good Night and Good Luck


Sat, Sep 10, 2011 : 2:45 p.m.

And the excuses flow like wine. I don't care why some poor are fat - my point was that nobody starves in the US unless they want to or are criminally stupid. ..and your point is silly - few people can over eat junk food then exercise those calories addition to the fact that many low paying jobs are physical. Lazy? I'm sure there are drug users on welfare who walk miles every day to attend their habit and/or others who work making cash off the books- are they lazy? Hilarius to see leftist socialist democrats try to speculate about the opinions of rational conservatives.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sat, Sep 10, 2011 : 2:19 p.m.

"In fact, the poor have one of the highest obesity rates of all sectors" Yes, let us explore why this is: 1) If one is working a series of minimum wage jobs, they don't have the time to exercise the amount recommended by dietitians and doctors. 2) If one is poor, they buy the cheapest foods possible. As it turns out, the worst foods are the foods that are cheapest. Soda is cheaper than milk or fruit juice. Processed food is cheaper than using fresh food. Frozen meals are cheaper than doing one's own cooking. Result: obesity. But I'm certain that, in some simpleton world, these folks are obese because they're lazy. Good Night and Good Luck


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 3:02 a.m.

Nobody starves in the US unless they are criminally stupid. In fact, the poor have one of the highest obesity rates of all sectors. One of the risks living in the greatest economic power in world history is we also have the freedom to make bad choices and fail - whether we have children or not. Great to hear you're back to school - the unemployment rate for educated people is far lower then those without it.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:24 p.m.

"Judea o/Christian ethics " on show from the Christian Right! "..for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me." Randians - 1, Jesus - 0

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Tue, Sep 13, 2011 : 9:37 p.m.

"sounds like an off topic dig at christians to me!" Only at those so-called Christians who revel in someone losing these benefits. Good Night and Good Luck

Not from around here

Mon, Sep 12, 2011 : 2:31 p.m.

sounds like an off topic dig at christians to me!


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 3:03 a.m.

God helps those who help themselves

Censorship sucks

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 6 p.m.

Jesus wasn't sitting on his butt collecting a check. "God helps those who help themselves", not those who help themselves to other peoples money while doing nothing.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 11:58 a.m.

The limit should be two years! The abuse of the system is staggering, I am all for helping the needy but for how long? There are so many just collecting checks, it must be nice to be taken care of by tax can I work the scam????

Monica R-W

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:41 p.m.

Treelover, you really want no forms of state assistance programs to exist, right? Its' OK, just say it!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:33 p.m.

What are the statistics for abuse of the system?

True Facts

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 11:42 a.m.

Thankyou Rick one more step in the right direction

buck rogers

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 11:33 a.m.

is this just for cash assistance? or does this include food also? children are starving out here even with working parents! LIVIN OFF RAMEN NOODLES, BEEF JERKEY & SPAM! now thats bad! jobs pay low wages, and only offer part time hours at best in my area. ive been going to school so i can get a better job. but thats not feeding my children either, not at the moment. ive never asked for cash assistance, but my children need food assistance, and medicare. untill i finish school and get a career, we are on a struggle. i dont have a car because when i lost a good paying job due to economic times, the township made me sell it, and fined me 3,400$ for having it in my driveway with out of date tags. hence i could'nt afford tags due to losing my job, and didnt want to drive illegally! nothing was wrong with the car either. now that i have job opportunities, i have no car. (and the bus does not run where i need to go) i agree with the drug testing all the way! do not take food from childrens mouths when their parents are really trying! me and my wife do not walk the ave and sell our bridge card money for drugs, we do not do drugs, and we never needed food assistance untill the economy took a dump on us! now im forced to walk or ride a bike a long distance with a meniscus tear in my left knee. alot of people are in my same position!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:30 p.m.

Mr Rogers - Section 8 housing assistance, food assistance, childcare assistance, surplus food assistance (USDA), and many other assistance programs are not touched by this change. Only cash assistance is touched. Another bill will let the state remove food assistance (bridge cards) from people who are in jail or have an outstanding warrant for their arrest. There are over 218 low income support programs scattered across the federal cabinet departments (even the Department of Defense has a few).


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:27 a.m.

This law really scares me because of the timing of it more than anything. We are asking people to get jobs at a time when we have very high unemployment or risk losing benefits. I understand the need to pull the abusers out of the system, but at what point do the changes hurt those who are not abusing the system more than they hurt the abusers? What about the children who will go from having very little to having NOTHING as a result of this law? The children can't be gainfully employed, so what will happen to them? Will we dump them on Child Protective Services because the parents can no longer afford to care for or feed them? This law has a chance to open a can of worms much much larger than Gov. Snyder wants to realize. I hope he is ready to deal with the ramifications of his decision because there will be some in the future. I favor changes to the system. The issue is that there is a time and there is a place for every change. This change, in a period of high unemployment is not occurring the proper time. I do favor drug testing for those getting welfare benefits. If you test positive you losing your benefits temporarily. A second bust and you lose them for 1 year. A third bust means ZERO benefits again. My tax dollars are going to those in need, not those hard up for a fix.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:09 p.m.

Ditto here...


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:32 p.m.

If I fail a drug test at work I'm fired, no second or third chances for me.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:16 a.m.

I look forward to a lot more armed robberies in Ypsilanti. It doesn't matter how you feel about welfare; people aren't going to let their kids starve if they have no money and can't find work.

Original Ann Arborite

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:56 p.m.

why don't u think the crime rate would not rise? I would say this is common sense that it will. Actually, wouldn't u say crime is up now with the current economic conditions? Ppl r back 2 snatching purses! Come on now! Another person out of touch...


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:08 p.m.

There are jobs available in Ypsilanti and in Ann Arbor. AATA offers free bus passes to those who need a ride to a job and back. Crime will not increase in Ypsilanti but more so I think in Detroit and the surrounding areas. We need to think outside the box. No one is going to starve.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:55 a.m.

""Affected recipients are able-bodied and have had at least four — some as long as 14 or more — years to transition to independence." And many of us have a problem with this ? You have got to be kidding me, tickle me till I die please !!!! If after 14 years, you cannot find a job, rise up on you two legs that God gave you and MOVE somewhere else and get "gainful" employment". Good Day


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:07 p.m.

People have risen and have moved out of state. I have seen more people I know leave this state in the last year then I have in the last 4. Detroit is half its size if not more and cities and towns are becoming ghost towns because there are no local jobs to be had. People, you gotta take responsibility for your own problems and move out of state to find a job you want to do. Nuff said.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:30 a.m.

Four years is a nice long time to "find yourself" and do nothing. It's sad many liberals just want to force people by taxes to pay for able bodied citizens to live a pretty easy lifestyle of TV watching. Conservatives want to earn their own money and keep most of it by not paying taxes for wasted programs. Thank goodness for the Tea Party and their fight against high taxes, able bodied welfare people, and immorality. We saw what liberalism did to Detroit, people must stand up against that type of thinking.

Monica R-W

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:32 a.m.

I see this law being overturned either after Gov. Snyder is citizen Rick Snyder again either after his recall or near January 1, 2014...after he is voted out of office in November 2013. In addition, I foresee the Republican controlled Senate and possibly the House flipping back to the Democrats at the end of the election night on November 3, 2012. Additionally, I predict near super-majorities in the House for sure and maybe in the state Senate for Democrats. Either way, the House will have a 2/3rd vote Democratic based override any veto by Gov. Snyder, soon. And how I can predict all these things, well because Rick Snyder and the Koch-Funded GOP Republicans in the state House and Senate have went too far. Not just with cutting 29.700 CHILDREN off of state assistance benefits but, by increasing taxes on seniors, ending most middle workers class state tax exemptions, threatening to lay off 47,000 state workers, ending the film incentive credit, attacks on unionized workers, installing Emergency Managers in direct contrast to our state Constitutional Home Rule statue, hurting public schools, damaging state shared revenue to cities, charters and townships and more. At the same time all of these events described above has happened, Gov. Snyder gave $1.4 BILLION dollars worth of tax cuts to corporations in our state that have YET to hire any potential workers. Fact-Unemployment rate in December 2010 under Fmr. Gov. Granholm-10.7%...unemployment rate under 8 months of GOP/Snyder leadership-10.9% July 2011. The worst is yet to come...August's figures are due shortly and to say that it will not hit 11% or more, is a fantasy. Michigan's voters have learned....let's the GOP run the House and they hurt your family, city, county, school district and pocket book. Enjoy it now GOP and Gov. Snyder because it will be SHORT LIVED!

Monica R-W

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:39 p.m.

This will be quick.... Nephilim-"Your Democratic President". Excuse me but President Obama is your President also, like it or not. Read the U.S. Constitution. L.C. Burgundy-I write for a living and for hobby. You are partially correct about one thing, it's a chance that exist in which Rick Snyder would avoid the 807,000 signature requirement for a recall vote. Either way, he will not be re-elected in 2013. That, you can take to the bank. Pest-Seriously? "The best thing that has happen to the state". Ok, then why does Michigan unemployment and poverty rates has increased since he was sworn into office? More seniors are facing poverty than anytime in the past four decades of Michigan history. Let's not talk about the children because poverty rates among Michigan families are nearly just as bad. Rick Snyder is destroying Michigan to promote a Koch-Brothers funded DonBee- True but, working class Michiganders are waking up that Rick Snyder policies, along with the GOP Super-Majority House and Senate, are NOT in LINE with their economic needs. Like, I predicted in my original post, I predict a flip of one or both state Chambers in 2012. Cinnbar-Glad you think this is funny. With the Secretary of State office experiencing an attempted robbery this afternoon....the first time I can remember this happening in Michigan within my lifetime. The state of despair in this state is getting downright serious. Not a laughing manner and jokes are unnecessary. What is truly sad, is after January 2012, the worst aspects of Rick Snyder and company, polices will be in full-effect. Wonder what our beloved state and communities will look like then.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:28 p.m.

Monica R-W Thanks for the laugh.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:25 p.m.

Monica R-W - The way the districts in the state are setup, almost all of them have a super majority of one party. The number of swing districts in the state is VERY small. It has been that way for more than 15 years. Your idea that the state houses will swing from one party to a super majority of the other are just not reality.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:17 p.m.

Recalled? He's the best thing that's happened to this state in 8 years. If he's recalled - I'm moving to another state. Michigan cannot survive another Granholm.

L. C. Burgundy

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:24 a.m.

Did you write this for a school assignment? He won't be recalled and Michigan will be in far, far better shape by November 2014. Letting people keep their money is not giving it to them.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:20 a.m.

Your democratic president with his democratic congress has done a bang up job so far. What's your excuses to justify his mess? Try and use something other than it was all caused from prior administration. HA!

I'm Ron Burgandy

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:10 a.m.

Good riddance to the people who were abusing the system. As already mentioned, it's meant to get people back on their feet, not sit on the couch and collect checks. Four years is way too long. It should be two years max!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:07 a.m.

A lifetime limit of 4 years means that if I receive assistance for 4 years while I am in my 20's, then work at a productive job for 30 years and I am laid off and run out of UCB, I would not be eligible for assistance again. Somehow this makes no sense. Although the state may pay for childcare while you work a minimum wage, part time job, it will not pay for additional childcare while you take classes to improve your employability. The mother who is a victim of domestic violence can receive temporary help. This is good, but what if she needs longer to deal with the emotional results to herself and her children? More thought should be given to the actual circumstances of the individuals involved. Rather it is being used as a political ploy to make it appear as though Snyder & other republicans are actually doing something to improve the financial situation of Michigan


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 5:26 p.m.

@L.C Burgandy the recent economic downturn has shown us that even those who are responsible, saving money and looking towards their future can run into trouble sometimes.

L. C. Burgundy

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:26 a.m.

You worked in a productive job for 30 years and didn't save a cent? That's not going to have a happy ending, period. Note that this change does not apply to the elderly.

Will Warner

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:05 a.m.

If someone knows a better way to ensure that the safety net is not a hammock, let's hear it.

Will Warner

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:54 p.m.

"The welfare system likely needed to be reformed, but placing arbitrary date limits isn't the answer." What is the answer? We all know people who abuse the system. I wouldn't be surprised if fully half of the participants didn't truely need it.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:14 p.m.

How does trickle up economics work?

Terrin Bell

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:56 a.m.

Sure, stop allowing the mega rich to walk all over the rest of us. We can start by repealing these so called free trade agreements that force American workers to compete with slave labor over seas. This to date has costs america millions of jobs, the taxes that went both to the federal and local governments from those jobs, and the security our country had by not supporting countries with no concept of human rights. You can trace most of the economic woes in this Country back to when President Clinton backed by both Democratic and Republican so called leaders allowed the NAFTA to become law. Allowing American employers to move operations to countries that make workers endure condition which are illegal in the US is simply unfair. Prior to NAFTA employers were free to do this for most goods, but were taxed an import tax to make goods manufactured in Countries with similar political structure more competitive with the communist countries. This also encouraged Countries like China to reform worker polices to make the playing field more equal. That import tax funded the federal government, and encouraged US Companies to build in Countries that supported the same values as us thereby feeding the local economy. We can also get back to trickle up economics, which is time tested to work, as opposed to so called trickle down economics which has to date failed. The welfare system likely needed to be reformed, but placing arbitrary date limits isn't the answer. It further gets people pitted against each other instead of looking at the bigger problems.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:50 a.m.

My opinion isn't going to change the Governor's mind. I just hope the people newly kicked off cash assistance break into the houses of the people in favor of the change instead of into my house. Hopefully most of them will find some other way to get by, but this doesn't seem like the best time to sneer "get a job!"


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 1:38 a.m.

Cinnabar, read it again. Besides, if someone breaks in while you're not home, what good is your protection? Censorship, you also need to read it again. I certainly didn't advocate for theft, I just hope that anyone who does, will go after the houses of people who were in favor of this change at such a poor time, instead of us who think it's lousy timing. No, it's not the same thing.

Original Ann Arborite

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 6:24 p.m.

Ur comment still has no substance, and let's keep it real here lolol I find ur comment in regards 2 my 'text' writing hilarious lololol Oh sorry, is it hard 4 u 2 read? It's so convienent! My comment stands because I was born and raised here, read it again, I didn't say they would all b UM students (duuuh) but the businessess more than likely want a UM student 2 fill the available position. This goes way back, I remember my Mom and her friends discussing how ppl couldn't get jobs because they were all taken by the UM students...anywaaay...

Censorship sucks

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:54 p.m.

So you're saying that if I go to all the shops downtown, EVERY worker is going to be a student? That's just an excuse. I've read that people fill out job applications as if they're texting, similar to the style of writing you're using (r instead of are). Maybe this is the problem? If you seriously are looking for work, I wish you the best. I have no easy solutions but I know that lifelong welfare isn't the answer. Nor is advocating for people to start stealing from others.

Original Ann Arborite

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:37 p.m.

@censorshipsucks Yes, there r help wanted signs downtown but u can bet ur bottom dollar (if u have 1) they only want UM students in those positions. Being born and raised here, I know that is def the practice!

Censorship sucks

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:24 p.m.

Amen to that cinnabar. And if someone is able bodied enough to break into a house, they can stand and flip burgers or work a cash register. I took a long walk around downtown last weekend and there are shops with "help wanted" signs in the window.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:21 p.m.

KJMClark carefull what you wish for, most that are for this change are more then willing to protect themselves and their families.

Terrin Bell

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:41 a.m.

Yes, the money saved in Welfare, will be lost in building more jails to support the people who had to steal to get by.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:24 a.m.

Why work when the government pays you not to?


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:02 a.m.

It wasn't that long ago that other states provided people with one-way bus tickets to Michigan because it was so easy to get welfare here. Welfare is not meant to be a lifestyle, but is meant to be a temporary assistance. Unfortunately that fact became lost somewhere along the way.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5:02 p.m.

I could not agree more with this statement.


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:38 p.m.

that few?i would have thought it would have been a whole lot more.A large % of them i'll bet shouldn't have been on it anyway or at least not to the extent they were. Get up,Go out,Find a job instead of just sticking your hand out What Don't You Understand about THAT?


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:20 a.m.

There is a permanent percentage of any population that is mentally and/or physically unfit for employment. I'm sure you've met some of them. But, we are a culture of life, so we have to do something for people. I'm sure you'd like to believe that everyone on welfare is just mocking you and having fun, but there are some truly deficient people in the world, and there always will be.

Terrin Bell

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:40 a.m.

When MacDonald's isn't hiring, good luck with that.

Macabre Sunset

Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:30 p.m.

Michigan was the only state in the country that had neither a time limit or a benefits limit. This change was long past due.

Tom Joad

Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:20 p.m.

Next step should be drug testing for any welfare recipient as a condition of receiving public benefits. With rampant drug use decimating communities throughout the state the people of Michigan should not be subsidizing a person's illegal drug use. What they save in food or financial assistance should not be going to a drug dealer. Public benefits require responsibility. A lifelong burden to the state doesn't do poor families any good and only perpetuates a dependency that we can no longer afford.


Sat, Sep 10, 2011 : 1:13 p.m.

I say drug testing for teachers, cops, politicians, doctors, nurses, union members since they can seriously influence elections, accountants, realtors, lawyers, judges, and ALL government workers who are the ultimate recipients of government subsidies.


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 5:32 p.m.

The timing is bad on this one due to our economy and lack of jobs but it's the economy that's driving the enforcement of what should have been adhered to long ago. With that said... I agree with Tom and Nephilim on this one and would take it one step further with penilizing the parent(s) of a deliquent or truant child with reduced benefits until that child is back in school and under control. Too many of these children are without any parental supervision. The parents need to be held accountable for their children's behavior.


Fri, Sep 9, 2011 : 5:23 p.m.

Sounds to me like you want to live under a fascist government, I prefer personal liberty myself. Maybe if we put a little more money towards neighborhood development, job training and drug rehab programs in the low income areas around the state and didn't worry so much about incarcerating non violent offenders there wouldn't be so many people on welfare.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:14 p.m.

Atticus do you have a link to your data? i find it hard to believe that only 3% fail.

Atticus F.

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:37 p.m.

tom, states that have instituted drug testing for these people have only found about 2-3% fail the drug test... So in other words, they spend about 6 million dollars on drug testing, in an effort to deny 400k in benefits. Nothing more than a bunch of angry controlling people who really dont care about the money so much as they care about medeling in other peoples lives.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:19 p.m.

Drug testing, mandatory birth control... Sounds like Taliban or Soviet style govt.

David Briegel

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:26 a.m.

But they have a right to life!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:06 a.m.

Heres another hot topic with welfare and ACLU. Somewhere the line was crossed into believing that welfare is a right not a priveledge as opposed to the other way around. I absolutely agree with the fact that if you are welfare, you will be drug tested. If you don't want this intrusion, then don't accept the assistance. The second thing I truly believe is that if you are a single mom with kids on welfare, then while you are accepting assistance, you are going to be subjected to an implanted birth control method. That should send some people over the top. I am tired of the single mothers on welfare that continue to have children with multiple partners with no outside income. We all end up bearing the brunt of the burden of the excess children with no accountability to the mom. You want welfare, you can be on birth control. You get off welfare and back on your own and elect to have another child, no problem. Im tired of paying for them.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:55 a.m.

Drug testing every adult receiving welfare would cost more than the money currently be received by recipients. Since most recipients do not use drugs, the long run cost would be far more expensive. I suppose it could provide new jobs for people who collected the samples and processed them. The need for responsibility is not limited to those on welfare.


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:18 p.m.

It should not be a lifestyle I have family members on welfare and they are abusing the system, they could work but choose not to


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:15 p.m.

clownfish I bet they are within their rights to get welfare, and thats why the system is changing. I also know a couple of abled bodied young men who live with their mom, who lives with her boyfriend in a $400k home and recieve bennies. Something is very wrong when you have a 25 y/o man living in a $400k home and get help from the state, I dont mind helping but when the people I'm helping are living better then I am. its time to change.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:18 p.m.

Then you should do The Right Thing BRAGG, report them to the proper authority instead of whining about The System.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 11:54 a.m.

Some of us work hard and went to school.... others do drugs and watch Jerry Springer all day.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:18 a.m.

What's wrong with your family?


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:15 p.m.

I think most ppl. agree the system needs to be fixed. If ppl. need help while they work then I dont have issues with that.. help those that help themselves. Most jobs are not going to give benefits or more then min wage.. for a year or so. but if the ppl.. are trying to work help them for awhile till they get things going.. this law scares me, in it short slam bam thank you screw you timing. 1 month to get a job???? be real.. and of course.... NO LOSS OF WAGES OR INSURANCE OR BENNIES FROM THE BIG WIGS IN LANSING


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 5 p.m.

Most people cannot afford the insurance that goes with some of the jobs available. This I agree will hurt a lot of people, but if you cannot afford the insurance, then the state or obama care will help out in the long run. Right now AAPS transportation workers are being forced to pay for health care with a $4000 deductible. Talk about ouch.


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 10:40 p.m.

Hey Gov. Snyder why don't you try to provide more job opportunities before taking from the poor. No wonder Michigan is in the sorry state it's in, everyone is leaving because of stupid moves like this. Take a cut to your pay first and see how well you do. Don't get me wrong, I by no means believe people should be on welfare forever, but with the economy looking the way it does and the lack of jobs people laid off at the start of this downfall have already been on assistance for 3 years. Any of you that wish to disagree with me, that think there are jobs. That think that he did the right thing. That think finding a full time job is easy, then hand me over your job and sit in my chair searching day in and day out with no luck.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 4:58 p.m.

There are jobs out there. The jobs that people do not want are what is available now and not what they are qualified to do. So if you were in manufacturing and there isn't a manufacturing job available currently, people need to look else where to keep things going not rely on the state for more then 4 plus years. Glad to see Snyder if capping this thing.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:38 p.m.

Hey, I have two degrees and the only job I could find after a YEAR of being unemployed was a part time min wage job. And I am SO thankful for it!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 3:16 a.m.

Neph - you are on point - i am sick and tired of the derelicts who continue to be consumers of the good will of those of us who contribute on a day to day basis. I dont want to be your mommy or daddy. I have enough to take care of on my own, paying my own bills, making my own way. I owe YOU nothing! Get a job, get a life....


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 2:50 a.m.

That's exactly the problem, you seem to think that you can sit in a chair all day and still find a job. Get out and knock on doors, that's what I do and haven't been unemployed since I was a kid.

David Briegel

Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 1:32 a.m.

local, until a trained professional has deemed that they are fit and able and ready to assume their place as a productive member of our society.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:57 a.m.

Everyone is leaving because of stupid moves like this? You are telling me that four years on state assistance is not enough time? I would personally cut it to two years. I am tired of listening to all the excuses as to why a bunch of these able bodied people could be working yet elect not to. Mostly for the simple reason they are too lazy to work. Some feel that the jobs that are in their abilities are beneath them yet they make no effort to better themselves. I have personally witnessed multi-generational families on welfare that have no interest in doing anything but welfare and HUD housing. There are alot of people that leave the state to go after work. Numerous people I know have. They understand the dynamics of what is going on with out state and the economy. Making statements such as Jrigglem is not even logical or even close to factual. Without seeing your resume, I presume you will fall into one of the two categories I listed above. Not Qualified or not going to do it. I have no issue with helping people who need help. I contribute a significant amount of time and money helping. I do have issue with the people who have no interest in helping themselves and become accustomed to this perceived belief it is now owed to them along with their kids and their kids kids. I have had enough. Good Job Governor!


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:42 a.m.

Jrigglem - "everyone is leaving because of stupid moves like this" - something tells me the people who want the change would be just fine with all the people on cash assistance leaving the state.


Thu, Sep 8, 2011 : 12:39 a.m.

Local - I think I'd be OK with indefinite benefits for kids, and a graduated program for adults that takes into account their level of disability, if any, and the current jobs environment. So, as soon as you go onto cash assistance as an adult, we give you a physical and mental exam, as well as a skills/aptitude test. If this all shows you're employable, we take into account the job situation, and if jobs are available, we expect you to work to get one, reducing benefits a little each month. If you're not employable given conditions, we require you go into a training program while receiving benefits. But I also think we should have some basic, unskilled, low paying jobs that are always available for people who we can't place in something else. Something like the WPA and CCC. Particularly for times like now, when we're in a Depression.


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:55 p.m.

@local I agree with your sentiments but I don't think that those misusing welfare benefits and those who deserve the benefits are necessarily split down the middle. I know many who use the welfare benefits and of all those I know, only one of them is possibly misusing the system.


Wed, Sep 7, 2011 : 11:06 p.m.

I am not a big fan of Snyder and this decision. My question for you is, how long should these benefits continue for? Should it be 5 years, 6 years, etc...? For every person out there looking hard for a job and needs this money, there is an equal amount who are sitting on there backside doing nothing but getting a welfare check. How long should our govt. allow this to go on? Should we have lifetime welfare benefits? Just wondering.