Wednesday, December 07, 2011

“Reliable Source” Says Fraud In State Department Of Social Services Is “Widespread.”

News 8 (WTNH) is quoting a “reliable source” to the effect that Connecticut’s Department of Social Services (DSS) “has been ignoring fraud for years because of staffing shortages.

“A person with years of experience working the state Department of Social Services Fraud Division says the alleged fraud announced by the Malloy Administration is just the tip of the iceberg, and what's worse, they know it and don't do anything about it…

The anonymous source told News 8:

"Fraud is never followed up on. There are so few people that handle the fraud cases that there are thousands of cases sitting in file cabinets, sitting on desks that will never get processed…

"The statute of limitations on cases, people move, people become un-locatable, so basically these files that are sitting on desks simply. They're just there, a waste of space."

Commissioner of DSS Roderick Bremby, on the job only 7 months, said In response, “I know of no fraud or abuse in any of our programs."

Asked, “And there's no files of reported fraud that hasn't been investigated?" Mr. Bremby responded, “There are no files of reported fraud that I am aware of in any of our programs."

Of course, if there were widespread fraud in the DSS programs, it would not be likely that the commissioner would be made aware of them by those in DSS who have worked for the agency more than 7 months, especially if they were involved in the fraud. What a commissioner 7 months on the job “does not know” or is “unaware of” could easily fill a small library.

Responding Wednesday to the WTNH-TV report Governor Dannel  Malloy said, "I can assure you that my administration will take those kinds of reports very seriously," according to an account in CTMirror. Noting that a whistleblower law protects any employees in a position to make similar reports. "Anybody who has any information, please bring it to me."

By mid-afternoon, Mr. Malloy dispatched an e-mail message to the media:

"Based on my administration's investigation, it appears clear that the abuses of public trust involved go beyond simply lying about income. In some instances, people lied about assets under their control or even listed a deceased relative as living in the household. Given the information known to us, these were not oversights or honest mistakes.

"This was outright fraud, and it will not stand."
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