Report 2009-108 Recommendations and Responses in 2015-041

Report 2009-108: California Department of Veterans Affairs: Although It Has Begun to Increase Its Outreach Efforts and to Coordinate With Other Entities, It Needs to Improve Its Strategic Planning Process, and Its CalVet Home Loan Program Is Not Designed to Address the Housing Needs of Some Veterans

Department Number of Years Reported As Not Fully Implemented Total Recommendations to Department Not Implemented After One Year Not Implemented as of 2014-041 Response Not Implemented as of Most Recent Response
Department of Veterans Affairs 5 14 5 3 3

Recommendation To: Veterans Affairs, Department of

To ensure that it has the information necessary to track progress in increasing veterans' participation in C&P benefits, and to identify where and how best to focus its outreach and coordination efforts, Veterans Services should require the CVSOs to submit information on the number of claims filed for C&P benefits and information on their outreach activities.

Response

CalVet has fully implemented the VetPro system to address this recommendation. All 57 counties with County Veteran Service Offices and the three Veteran Services Division District Offices have converted to VetPro (previously referred to as SAIS/SAIM).

All CVSOs enter the number of compensation and pension (C&P) claims filed by their county into VetPro in order to receive state subvention funding for those claims. VetPro gives CalVet the ability to expand its supervision of the claim activity down to the individual veteran representative filing the claim. CalVet is also able to track the number of workload and outreach activities reported by each CVSO. By October 31, 2015, CalVet will be submitting proposed regulations to require CVSOs to report outreach metrics through VetPro.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: July 2016
  • Response Date: September 2015

Recommendation To: Veterans Affairs, Department of

As Veterans Services expands its efforts to increase veterans' participation in C&P benefits, it should use veterans' demographic information, such as that available through the U.S. Census Bureau, and the information it plans to obtain from the CVSOs using its SAIM system, to focus its outreach and coordination efforts on those counties with the highest potential for increasing the State's rate of participation in C&P benefits.

Response

CalVet continues to gather demographic information and conduct needs assessments to target outreach through a variety of channels including the Geographic Distribution of Expenditures report, County Veterans Services Office (CVSO) Subvention Reports, and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs VetPop data, while continuing to connect veterans and their families with services and benefits through ongoing strategies and partnerships. CalVet understands the significance of the myCalVet site and its potential to supply information statewide in an ongoing and cost effective way. By December 31, 2015, CalVet will develop a marketing plan to use CalVet website data to target outreach to regions where veterans have not created profiles at the same rate as others. By October 31, 2015, CalVet will be submitting proposed regulations to require CVSOs to report outreach metrics through VetPro. Once the regulations are established, CVSO outreach metrics will be tracked through the statewide claims case management system, VetPro.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: December 2015
  • Response Date: September 2015

Recommendation To: Veterans Affairs, Department of

Veterans Services should continue its efforts to pursue the SAIM system to enable it to monitor the quantity and quality of claims processed by the CVSOs, and ensure it meets legal requirements regarding auditing CVSO workload reports and verifying the appropriateness of college fee waivers. To the extent that Veterans Services is unsuccessful in implementing the SAIM system, the department will need to develop other avenues by which to meet its legal requirements.

Response

CalVet has fully implemented the Subvention Accounting Information System (SAIS/SAIM) called VetPro to address this recommendation. All 57 counties with County Veteran Service Offices and the three Veteran Services Division District Offices have converted to VetPro.

VetPro gives CalVet the ability to expand its supervision of the claim activity down to the individual veteran representative filing the claim. This allows CalVet to properly audit workload units for subvention funding, influence the quality of the claims, and track outreach activities. In addition, this automated process will allow both CalVet and the counties to implement new changes from the VA systematically, which will reduce the training and lag time in getting these changes to the field.

The CalVet CVSO Auditor is currently implementing procedures for the audit functions to include periodic reviews of CVSO claims activities and College Fee Waiver Program. Written desk procedures for these processes will be completed by December 31, 2015. District Office staff continue to provide regular training and feedback to CVSOs including feedback on corrections made to incoming claims on a monthly basis, and will continue to provide training to all CVSOs at three training conferences each year.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: December 2015
  • Response Date: September 2015

Current Status of Recommendations

All Recommendations in 2015-041