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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

256.987 ELECTRONIC BENEFIT TRANSFER CARD.

Subdivision 1.Electronic benefit transfer (EBT) card.

Cash benefits for the general assistance and Minnesota supplemental aid programs under chapter 256D and programs under chapter 256J must be issued on an EBT card with the name of the head of household printed on the card. The card must include the following statement: "It is unlawful to use this card to purchase tobacco products or alcoholic beverages." This card must be issued within 30 calendar days of an eligibility determination. During the initial 30 calendar days of eligibility, a recipient may have cash benefits issued on an EBT card without a name printed on the card. This card may be the same card on which food support benefits are issued and does not need to meet the requirements of this section.

Subd. 2.Prohibited purchases.

An individual with an EBT card issued for one of the programs listed under subdivision 1 is prohibited from using the EBT debit card to purchase tobacco products and alcoholic beverages, as defined in section 340A.101, subdivision 2. Any prohibited purchases made under this subdivision shall constitute unlawful use and result in disqualification of the cardholder from the program as provided in subdivision 4.

Subd. 3.EBT use restricted to certain states.

EBT debit cardholders in programs listed under subdivision 1 are prohibited from using the cash portion of the EBT card at vendors and automatic teller machines located outside of Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, or Wisconsin. This subdivision does not apply to the food portion.

[See Note.]

Subd. 4.Disqualification.

(a) Any person found to be guilty of purchasing tobacco products or alcoholic beverages with their EBT debit card by a federal or state court or by an administrative hearing determination, or waiver thereof, through a disqualification consent agreement, or as part of any approved diversion plan under section 401.065, or any court-ordered stay which carries with it any probationary or other conditions, in the: (1) Minnesota family investment program and any affiliated program to include the diversionary work program and the work participation cash benefit program under chapter 256J; (2) general assistance program under chapter 256D; or (3) Minnesota supplemental aid program under chapter 256D, shall be disqualified from all of the listed programs.

(b) The needs of the disqualified individual shall not be taken into consideration in determining the grant level for that assistance unit: (1) for one year after the first offense; (2) for two years after the second offense; and (3) permanently after the third or subsequent offense.

(c) The period of program disqualification shall begin on the date stipulated on the advance notice of disqualification without possibility for postponement for administrative stay or administrative hearing and shall continue through completion unless and until the findings upon which the sanctions were imposed are reversed by a court of competent jurisdiction. The period for which sanctions are imposed is not subject to review.

NOTE: Subdivision 3, as added by Laws 2012, chapter 247, article 3, section 8, is effective March 1, 2013. Laws 2012, chapter 247, article 3, section 8, the effective date.