State and federal officials today signed an agreement empowering Massachusetts authorities to investigate retailers who may be engaging in food stamp-related fraud.
Because the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a federal one, national authorities usually investigate retailer fraud while leaving consumer fraud investigations up to the states.
But under the agreement signed today, state agencies can now go after stores that accept food stamps in exchange for lesser amounts of cash, pocking the difference.
Department of Transitional Assistance Commissioner Stacey Monahan called it “a first-of-its-kind agreement in Massachusetts” and said it “will allow the department to collaboratively investigate potential SNAP trafficking and allow law enforcement to prosecute those who are making money by defrauding the system.”
Massachusetts becomes the 15th state to have an active agreement of this type with the Department of Agriculture.