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Our Bad, Your Possible Imprisonment

After the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance complied with a Freedom of Information request and told Michael Morisy where in the state food stamps had been redeemed, he posted his analysis on his web site. Example: several individual 7-Eleven stores each redeemed more than $100,000 in food stamps. Then a state lawyer sent him a letter: the U.S. Department of Agriculture saw the online report, and if he didn’t take down the information, he could be fined or imprisoned, she told him. “Our bad,” said the lawyer, who admitted her office should have realized federal law prohibits making the information public. (AC/Boston Globe) ...The food stamp program offers food for free, but you may have to pay for your speech.
Original Publication Date: 21 November 2010
This story is in True’s book collections, in Volume 17.

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