June 9, 1996 in Nation/World

Congressman Urges Welfare Waivers

Associated Press

A Republican congressman urged President Clinton Saturday to immediately grant the necessary waivers to Wisconsin’s welfare plan to prove his commitment to welfare reform.

Rep. Mark Neumann of Wisconsin said in the Republicans’ weekly radio address there was no need for the plan to be stalled by government red tape after the president lauded it last month as one of the most innovative plans being proposed by state legislatures.

“Do these Washington bureaucrats really believe they have more wisdom and compassion than the people of Wisconsin?” asked Neumann.

The House approved waivers of federal regulations Thursday so Wisconsin can initiate its welfare overhaul plan. The waiver bill must still be taken up by the Senate and signed by the president.

Republicans have said Congress should intercede because it sometimes takes years for Washington to rule on a waiver request, and that federal bureaucrats often demand major changes in state proposals.

The “Wisconsin Works” plan was one of the most complex ever submitted, a 400-page document seeking 83 waivers from the Health and Human Services Department and five from the Agriculture Department for food stamp programs.

© Copyright 1996 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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