Most Recent Reports Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT List of the most recent reports published by the California State Auditor Report 2013-119: California Department of Health Care Services: Its Failure to Properly Administer the Drug Medi-Cal Treatment Program Created Opportunities for Fraud <p>Our audit of the California Department of Health Care Services' and the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programsadministration of the Drug Medi-Cal Treatment Program (program) highlighted the following:</p> <ul> <li>Between July 1, 2008, and December 31, 2013, the State approved nearly $1 million to potentially ineligible substance abuse clinics (providers).</li> <li>We found 323 instances amounting to more than $10,000 in which the State reimbursed providers for services they purportedly rendered to deceased beneficiaries.</li> <li>Our analysis of four years of program claims billing data identified $93.7 million in authorized payments that were potentially indicative of fraudulent activity.</li> <li>Neither department implemented an effective provider certification process, nor did they enforce laws and regulations designed to prevent fraudulent provider applicants from obtaining certification.</li> <li>Neither department consistently followed its own certification processes--we found serious deficiencies in each of the files of 25 program provider applicants we reviewed. </li> <li>The departments only took steps to strengthen the program recertification process when mandated to do so by the federal government.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-122: California Department of Toxic Substances Control: Its Lack of Diligence in Cost Recovery Has Contributed to Millions in Unbilled and Uncollected Costs <p>Our audit of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (department) highlighted the following:</p> <ul> <li>Long-standing shortcomings with the department's recovery of costs have resulted in unbilled and billed but uncollected cleanup costs (outstanding costs)--as of March 2014 the department has 1,661 projects totaling almost $194 million in outstanding costs.<ul> <li>Nearly $142 million was unbilled and almost $52 million was billed but uncollected.</li> <li>These outstanding costs were incurred between July 1987 and December 2013.</li> </ul></li> <li>The department has made progress in resolving the accuracy of information related to projects with outstanding costs. However, it may extend the target completion dates for some tasks until June 2016.</li> <li>The department may not be able to recover all of its outstanding costs due to several factors--preliminary determinations indicated that the federal and state statutes of limitations have expired for 76 projects with a total of $13.4 million in outstanding costs.</li> <li>Despite updating its cost recovery procedures, we found several areas in which the department could better maximize its cost recovery efforts.</li> <li>The department has not consistently used some of its methods--such as issuing collection letters or recording liens on the properties of responsible parties to ensure that it maximizes cost recovery.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2014-501: State Lands Commission--Follow-Up Review The California State Auditor just released report 2014-501: State Lands Commission--Follow-Up Review. Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2014-502: Commission on Teacher Credentialing--Follow-Up Review The California State Auditor just released report 2014-502: Commission on Teacher Credentialing--Follow-Up Review. Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-126: Antelope Valley Water Rates: Various Factors Contribute to Differences Among Water Utilities <p>Our audit concerning Antelope Valley water rates revealed the following:</p> <ul> <li>Of the four water utilities we reviewed--Los Angeles County Waterworks, District 40 (LA District 40), Palmdale Water District (Palmdale), Quartz Hill Water District (Quartz Hill), and California Water Service Company (Cal Water)--water rates differed considerably based on the various costs they incur. <ul> <li>Cal Water, an investor-owned utility, incurs costs that government-owned utilities (public utilities) do not, which include property and franchise taxes.</li> <li>Public utilities--LA District 40, Palmdale, and Quartz Hill--receive revenues, primarily from property taxes, that help cover costs and contribute to lower rates.</li> <li>A utility's source of water contributes to cost variations.</li> </ul></li> <li>Processes are in place to protect consumers from unreasonable rate increases and each of the water utilities generally followed these processes.</li> <li>In some cases, the water utilities could not quantify their efforts to reduce water rates.</li> <li>Cal Water offers two rate assistance programs while the three public utilities do not offer discounts to their customers.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-123: California Community College Accreditation: Colleges Are Treated Inconsistently and Opportunities Exist for Improvement in the Accreditation Process <p>Our audit of the accreditation process of California's community colleges highlighted the following:</p> <ul> <li>The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (commission) was inconsistent in applying its accreditation process. <ul> <li>It decided to terminate City College of San Francisco's (CCSF) accreditation after allowing only one year to come into compliance even though it could have given the college more time.</li> <li>It allowed 15 institutions to take two years to come into compliance and allowed another six institutions to take up to five years to reach compliance.</li> </ul></li> <li>The commission's deliberations regarding an institution's accreditation status lack transparency.</li> <li>The appeal process of the commission does not allow institutions a definitive right to provide new evidence--a limitation that may be detrimental in showing the progress made in addressing deficiencies.</li> <li>The commission sanctions community colleges at a higher rate than the six other regional accreditors in the nation.</li> <li>Options exist that may allow community colleges to choose an accreditor other than the commission.</li> <li>The California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office could improve its monitoring of community colleges to identify institutions at risk of receiving a sanction.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-124: Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence: California Universities Must Better Protect Students by Doing More to Prevent, Respond to, and Resolve Incidents <p>Our audit of the handling of sexual harassment and sexual violence incidents at four California universities highlighted the following:</p> <ul> <li>The universities do not ensure that all faculty and staff are sufficiently trained on responding to and reporting these incidents to appropriate officials.</li> <li>Certain university employees who are likely to be the first point of contact are not sufficiently trained on responding to and reporting these incidents.</li> <li>The universities must do more to properly educate students on sexual harassment and sexual violence.<ul> <li>Provide education to incoming students near the time they arrive on campus.</li> <li>Provide all continuing students periodic refresher training at least annually.</li> <li>Review and modify educational programs to comply with changes in laws and guidance.</li> </ul></li> <li> The universities did not always comply with requirements in state law for distribution of relevant policies.</li> <li>Thirty-five percent of the students who participated in a survey we conducted stated that they had experienced such incidents by another member of the campus community.</li> <li>Twenty-two percent of the students who participated in our survey were not aware of resources available on campus should they or someone they know experience such incidents.</li> <li>The universities need to better inform students who file a complaint of the status of the investigation and notify them of the eventual outcome.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2014-005: State of California: Treasurer's Cash Count as of December 31, 2013 The California State Auditor just released report 2014-005: State of California: Treasurer's Cash Count as of December 31, 2013. Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-120: Sterilization of Female Inmates: Some Inmates Were Sterilized Unlawfully, and Safeguards Designed to Limit Occurrences of the Procedure Failed <p>Our audit of female inmate sterilizations occurring over an eight-year period revealed the following:</p> <ul> <li>144 female inmates were sterilized through a surgery known as bilateral tubal ligation.</li> <li>39 inmates were sterilized following deficiencies in the informed consent process.<ul> <li>We saw no evidence that the inmate's physician signed the required consent form in 27 cases.</li> <li>In 18 cases, we noted potential violations of the required waiting period between when the inmate consented to the procedure and when the sterilization procedure actually took place.</li> <li>Among these 39 inmates there were six cases where we noted violations of both consent form and waiting period.</li> </ul></li> <li>Neither the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation nor the California Correctional Health Care Services ensured that the informed consent requirements were followed in 19 instances in which their employees obtained inmates' consent.</li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster) Report 2013-130: California Public Utilities Commission: It Fails to Adequately Ensure Consumers' Transportation Safety and Does Not Appropriately Collect and Spend Fees From Passenger Carriers <p>Our audit of the California Public Utilities Commission's (commission) efforts to regulate passenger carriers, revealed the following:</p> <ul> <li>The commission's oversight of passenger carriers is insufficient to ensure consumer safety. <ul> <li>It does not have formal policies and procedures to address complaints against passenger carriers.</li> <li>It does not ensure complaints are resolved timely or adequately.</li> <li>When it issues citations to passenger carriers, the citations have been for amounts much lower than what state law allows.</li> </ul></li> <li>It does not perform periodic reviews of passenger carrier fee payments to ensure the State received the proper amount of fee revenue.</li> <li>The commission does not track--by class of carrier--how it spends fees received from each class of common carrier.</li> <li>The commission is not using some of its staff for airport enforcement although it received funding for this purpose.</li> <li>The commission lacks effective program leadership. <ul> <li>It has not established program goals, strategies, or performance measures to guide its efforts.</li> <li>It has high turnover and vacancies in key management positions.</li> </ul></li> </ul> Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:00:00 GMT (California State Auditor Webmaster)