Northern Maine town backs off welfare recipient drug tests

MADAWASKA, Maine (AP) — The town manager in a northern Maine community says he is backing off a proposal to drug test welfare recipients.

Madawaska Town Manager Ryan Pelletier said earlier this summer that such new rules could apply to the town’s use of state General Assistance money. He said on Monday that he is not moving forward with a random drug testing policy.

Instead, Pelletier is recommending that the town follow the state’s lead with drug testing requirements for convicted felons. He says he will tell the town’s Board of Selectmen on Monday night that the local charter commission should explore the adoption of a similar policy.

The General Assistance program provides money for things like food.

The ACLU had raised questions about the legality of the plan to drug test welfare recipients.

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