Rep. Melvin Henley pre-filed a bill today that would set up two pilot programs — one each in the eastern and western parts of the state — to require drug testing of public assistance recipients and require revocation of benefits from anyone who fails the test or refuses to take one.

The bill requires testing to be limited to cases in which officials have probable cause to believe an adult recipient is using illegal drugs. This provision had to be added to last year’s version to avoid prevent the bill from being found unconstitutional. He said back in June that he would file this bill.

This bill generated wide public support last session, only to be killed in the House. Figuring out some way to cut back on abuse of the welfare system is probably a good idea. Fiscally responsible legislators may want to weigh in on this one.