To ensure the accuracy and consistency of the information on welfare fraud activities that counties report and that Social Services subsequently reports to the federal government, the Legislature, and internal users, Social Services should take the following steps: Remind counties that they are responsible for reviewing the accuracy and consistency of investigation activity reports before submission.
On March 12, 2015, the Bureau Chief of the Welfare Fraud and Emergency Food Assistance Program within the Department of Social Services emailed every county Special Investigation Unit chief in order to remind them all of the requirement to submit accurate and timely submissions of the monthly Fraud Investigation Activity Report (DPA 266).
During the IEVS compliance reviews, CDSS reminds counties to review their reports for accuracy and consistency prior to submitting them to CDSS. CDSS also sends emails to those counties who are late in submitting their reports and, on occasion, a reminder of the upcoming report due date (Attachment B).
The attachment that Social Services references does not demonstrate that it has reminded counties of their responsibility for reviewing the accuracy and consistency of investigation activity reports before submission. We are dismayed that Social Services has not implemented this recommendation during the five years since we issued our report.
Partially Implemented/Estimated Completion Date: December 31, 2013. The county reports, including but not limited to the DPA 266, include the number of investigations for CalWORKs and CalFresh. CDSS staff has worked with the counties to improve the reporting of this data, including the use of data validation as part of the county review process.
Additionally, CDSS has finalized the revisions to the DPA 266 report and instructions. An internal review is underway and the Department anticipates issuing the report and instructions through an All County Letter by December 31, 2013. This will also improve the reporting of investigations and disposition.
As a result of the 2009 BSA Audit, all IEVS reviews conducted by the CDSS now include an evaluation of the counties' Department of Public Assistance (DPA) 266 Fraud Investigation Activity Reports. If the evaluation reveals that a county is not submitting accurate or timely data, the county is required to submit revised DPA 266 reports.
The CDSS is also in the process of finalizing significant revisions to the DPA 266 report and the instructions for its completion. The CDSS anticipates release of the revised DPA 266 and instructions to the counties in the spring of 2013. Following this release, the CDSS will provide technical assistance and training to counties throughout the state. This will ensure counties are thoroughly trained on how to complete the report accurately.
Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.