Living the good life off of government benefits

For this story, CBS 21 researched what government programs are available to a single mother of two making $19,000 a year. What we found was incredible.

Our family would be eligible for $14,976 in free day care, another $13,400 for Head Start and Early Head Start, $7,148 in housing vouchers, $6,500 for weatherization projects, $400 to pay heating bills, $480 a year for a cell phone, with an extra $230 for a land line, and $182 in free legal advice.

The family would get more than $6,028 in food assistance and another $6,045 in medical assistance. The mother is eligible for $5,500 in Pell Grants for school with an additional $12,000 for the Education Opportunity Grant; SMART Grant; and TEACH Grant.

Our family would also get $6,800 in tax credits, and $1,900 in withholding would be returned.

Add it up and this family can get $81,589 in free assistance.

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • The Whistler

    I don’t mind helping out but you’ll never get anyone off the dole if you make it too easy.

  • SigFan

    Sign me up – I’m tired of busting my ass so indolent people can live off the efforts of others.

  • JoeMN

    If you’re going to get something for free, are you going to work for
    it?” Cogan explained. “It kind of like sucks you in. They feel like
    they are hopeless. They feel like they have no alternative
    To liberals this is a feature, not a bug

  • WOOF

    Last week poor families were collecting $61K according to SA.
    Now it’s $81K.
    Poor families got a raise ?
    Retroactive from when ?

    • The Whistler

      I’d recommend you follow the link to the article.

    • splined

      In order to come up with the $61,000 average per household in poverty spent, perhaps some recipients receive a lot more than $61,000.

    • sbark

      They were not receiving the full 61k……..they were receiving 30k…….and govt beuracrats to “manage the poor” were eating up the other 31k……….
      that is a clear case of Big Govt and its gross inefficiencies

  • matthew_bosch

    Lol…why is anyone going to work? Quit your job that pays 40k a year, maybe get a PT job that earns 14k and then supplement the rest with gov’t programs.

  • Kevin Flanagan

    Whatever happened to charity?

    • sbark

      Charity doesnt leave a welfare case with the overriding feeling that Govt or a messianic figure in Govt ……is a god

  • PennState93

    How in the world can a federal bureaucrat, 3,000 miles away know what is truly needed by poverty strickened people? They don’t. Charity, local charity, is the only way that taxpayers can know who REALLY needs help & who is five generations on ‘welfare’.
    Great article. Thanks.

  • $8194357

    Bought and paid for voting blocks, huh.