Report 2012-111 Recommendations and Responses in 2015-041

Report 2012-111: California Department of Public Health: It Needs to Improve Accuracy in Accounting and Charging for Compliance Inspections Designed to Reduce Youth Access to Tobacco and It Could Enhance Its Compliance Inspections

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 Public Health 2 9 6 6 0

Recommendation To: Public Health, Department of

When Public Health enters into new contracts with local entities to conduct compliance inspections, it should evaluate its historical costs of conducting these inspections to ensure that the existing rates are adequate to recoup its costs. If it determines that the existing rates are not adequate, it should develop a new rate that accurately reflects its true costs.

Response

On July 1, 2013, Public Health began collecting activity and cost data reports to determine a baseline for its historical costs of conducting local compliance inspections. Public Health has now collected 12 months of data by using the CORE system and has completed its evaluation of historical costs. The Department utilized this data to ensure that the local entity compliance inspection rate is reflective of true costs.

As part of the process several documents were created to accurately track activities and submit timesheets to accounting to ensure CORE reports were reflective of the true costs.

Unit Chief/Supervisor share responsibilities to ensure cost/time tracking and reporting documents are completed and accurate. Admin. Chief makes recommendation to reimburse costs if necessary.

1. Weekly Activity Reporting Procedures

2. Time Reporting Flow Diagram

3. Activity Report Instructions

4. Weekly Activity Report (form)

5. Monthly Time Accounting Form

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: July 2014
  • Response Date: October 2015

Recommendation To: Public Health, Department of

Public Health should amend its recent contract with the city of Los Angeles to correct the rate it charges for a local compliance inspection to reflect its true cost.

Response

Public Health has used the CORE system and the data from its new time tracking system to determine the true cost per compliance check. This data has revealed that the contracted rate was higher than needed to reimburse Public Health for its true cost per compliance check. Public Health contacted the City of Los Angeles and requested to amend its current contract to reflect the correct rate. However, as the contract was towards the end of the term, the City of Los Angeles chose not to amend the contract. As a result, Public Health will reimburse the City of Los Angeles the difference.

On January 5, 2015, Public Health reimbursed the City of Los Angeles $161,369.98.

Public Health has used the new rate in included language in the current contract to ensure that the total cost of contracted compliance inspections will not exceed Public

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: July 2014
  • Response Date: October 2015

Recommendation To: Public Health, Department of

To ensure that Public Health can more effectively monitor and enforce compliance with the STAKE Act, it should include the retailers that sold tobacco to minors during the annual retailer assessment when selecting the retailers it plans to inspect as part of the statewide compliance inspections.

Response

CDPH has implemented this recommendation

On July 2014, FDB incorporated referrals received from the Tobacco Control Branch (TCB) into its annual compliance check work plan.

This recommendation will be implemented annually by FDB during the first quarter of each fiscal year as data on violating retailers is shared by TCB.

All TCB complaint referrals are added into the corresponding district work plans. Every effort is made to select tobacco retailers based on programmatic and geographical assignments. All complaints are prioritized and incorporated into the workplan to effectively monitor tobacco retailers statewide.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: July 2014
  • Response Date: October 2015

Recommendation To: Public Health, Department of

To ensure that Public Health can more effectively monitor and enforce compliance with the STAKE Act, it should take appropriate steps to ensure that there are no restrictions placed on the use of the data acquired during the annual retailer assessment that would preclude its use for compliance inspection purposes.

Response

On January 28, 2015, the California Tobacco Control Program (CTCP) contract with California State University Sacramento (CSUS) to perform the Youth Tobacco Purchase Survey (YTPS) was fully executed. Attached is a copy of the fully executed contract. The Scope of Work for the new contract states that CSUS will obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval to conduct the study and share the names and addresses of violating stores with the California Department of Public Health, Food and Drug Branch (FDB).

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: January 2015
  • Response Date: October 2015

Recommendation To: Public Health, Department of

To ensure that Public Health can more effectively monitor and enforce compliance with the STAKE Act, it should annually obtain the identifying information regarding the retailers that sold tobacco to minors during the annual retailer assessment and provide that information to the Food and Drug Branch.

Response

The CSUS IRB protocol incorporates sharing information on violating stores with the CDPH, Food and Drug Branch (FDB) and includes a statement on the consent form indicating that information gathered from the YTPS may be used for future research purposes. An exemption from full review signifies that the CSUS IRB does not see any problems with CTCP sharing information on violating stores with FDB nor with information gathered from the YTPS being used for future research purposes.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented
  • Completion Date: January 2015
  • Response Date: October 2015

Current Status of Recommendations

All Recommendations in 2015-041