Roswell Sen. John Albers is concerned about where taxpayers dollars are going and he's hoping that by drug testing anyone receiving temporary government funds, the state will cut down on irresponsible spending.
"Our dependency on entitlement programs has grown at an alarming and unsustainable rate. It is time for an era of responsibility and accountability," he told Roswell Patch.
Albers, along with Rep. Jason Spencer (R-Woodbine), is proposing legislation that would require mandatory drug testing for social service recipients. They're calling it: the “Social Responsibility and Accountability Act.” It would require recipients of Medicaid and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) welfare programs to undergo drug tests.
The measure would "ensure we are giving people a 'hand up' and not just a 'hand out,'" he said.
Despite the fact that similar legislation has met obstacles in other states like Florida, Albers said he believes it will become law in Georgia.
"We are working with the Attorney General's office here in Georgia and Florida. We all believe the law will support drug testing," he said.
According to Albers, the welfare reform act of 1996 specifically allows for drug testing. He believes the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guards against unreasonable search and seizures, can support it.
"As a nation, we are facing some of the most challenging economic times of the past century and many Georgians are confronted with the daily reality of tightening their wallets to secure the economic stability of their families," Albers said.
But not everyone agrees with how Alber's bill will go about trying to help secure that economic stability on a state level. The American Civil Liberties Union recently told CBS Atlanta that the bill is an attempt to help fewer Georgians.
Albers and Spencer will hold a joint press conference this morning, Nov. 15, to discuss the measure more in depth.
Do you agree with Albers proposal to drug test recipients of tax dollars? Or do you think it's an invasion of privacy? Tell us in the comments below.