This paper introduces the central dimensions which have emerged in the current welfare reform debate. They include adaquacy, work incentives, family stability and cost. The last legislative session introduced a new group of "welfare reform" proposals, each attempting to address these critiques of the current welfare system. Considering four major bills including Carter's Comprehensive Program for Better Jobs and Income on the basis of recent research findings, results in a tentative preference for Carter's plan. It addresses the major reform dimensions better than the others and would result in modest improvements. Nevertheless, true reform is unlikely to be achieved by any of these approaches if more fundamental intervention in the labor market is not taken.

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