Lake Havasu City, AZ – Supervisor Buster Johnson has received an updated report from the Department of Economic Security (DES) on the number of recipients receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Payments (SNAP) and Medicaid paid out by tax payer dollars in the Colorado City area. Supervisor Johnson, who has fought for the rights of women and children in Colorado City since taking office in 1997, first notified the public of his concerns regarding this issue back in September. “This new report continues to show that over 90% of the population of Colorado City is receiving supplemental nutrition and medical assistance,” Johnson stated. “Over $400,000 a month in SNAP benefits alone is being paid out for a town with a population of only a little under five thousand,” Johnson continued.
The DES figures showed that over $12 million in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance was paid out from July of 2011 to December of 2013. “For a small town, these numbers continue to be outrageous. While recipients around the state saw their SNAP benefits cut by 5% in November, those in Colorado City don’t seem to be feeling the same hardship,” Johnson said. According to the latest figures, in December of 2013 approximately $428,099 was paid out for SNAP benefits on 529 cases resulting in a total household SNAP benefit of a little over $800 a month. “The average benefit for a household in the state of Arizona is roughly $288. The households in Colorado City are receiving over two times that amount,” Johnson said.
During the past 17 years in public office, Supervisor Johnson has continued to see the FLDS “bleed the beast,” a term used by the FLDS prophet to justify the taking of tax payer dollars. “The women and children in Colorado City are not the ones receiving the actual benefits. They have been forced on a strict diet of water and beans by order of the FLDS prophet, Warren Jeffs,” Johnson explained.
The figures released to Johnson’s office also show that for that same time period a total of 141,363 medical related appointments were made and paid for with tax payer dollars. While the report does not specify exactly how much money was paid out for medical assistance in the Colorado City area, the number can be estimated by going off the reported average cost of $199 per doctor visit in the United States. “By going off of the $199 per visit number, the amount paid for with tax payer dollars for 2013 alone would have amounted to a total cost of over $11 million,” Johnson ended.