The Pennsylvania legislature has given final approval to a bill that would create stronger penalties for food assistance trafficking.
The state House of Representative approved Senate Bill 1127 on Tuesday by a vote of 166-24. The Senate passed it unanimously in June.
The bill targets people and businesses who buy EBT cards from recipients for just a fraction of the value then use the cards to purchase merchandise for stores.
Under the bill, fraudulent trafficking of SNAP benefits in an amount greater than $2,500 would be a second-degree felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
The crime currently is graded as a third-degree felony.
Those convicted could be required to pay restitution of up to three times the amount of the fraud they committed.