Sound Off

What regulations are there on paying for cigarettes with food stamps or other forms of government assistance? A cashier told me they just go through as a cash purchase.

Federal regulations clearly prohibit food stamps being used to buy cigarettes, but there is nothing to stop someone who's receiving cash assistance from using part of their allotment.

In Kansas, both the food-stamp and cash-assistance programs use the same "Vision Card," which acts like a debit card. If a cashier said tobacco purchases go through with no problems, it's either because the computer is deducting the purchase from the customer's cash-assistance allotment or the store's computer isn't programmed correctly.

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