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With GOP Back at Helm, Montana Renews Push to Sniff Out Welfare Fraud

Montana is considering becoming the latest state to intensify its hunt for welfare overpayments and fraud, a move expected to remove more than 1,500 enrollees from low-income health coverage at a time when the pandemic has left more people needing help.

With Republicans now controlling both chambers of the Montana legislature and the governor’s office, a lawmaker is reviving an effort to both broaden and increase the frequency of eligibility checks to search for welfare fraud, waste and abuse. Proponents say it’s about what’s fair — weeding out people who don’t qualify, protecting safety nets for those who do, and saving the state millions. But advocates for low-income people who rely on such services and some policy analysts say such changes would unfairly drop eligible people who need the aid.

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