In North Carolina the State Auditor’s office has reported that $687,000 dollars in overpayments for unemployment benefits were made from 2009 to 2011. The report goes on to cover that the NC Divisions’ of Employment Services did not comply with provisions in the American Recovery and Investment Act to attempt to recover any overpayments.
The payments were part of a stimulus program meant to increase the amount received by beneficiaries by about $25 dollars a week. Unfortunately the funds are, “likely to be difficult to recover,” said Dennis Patterson, Director of Public Affairs for the State Auditor’s office. The audit found 190 cases where recipients received at least 1 duplicative payment from the state.
Part of the fault rests with the Division of Employment services, which did not make computer-programming upgrades to help identify potentialoverpayments in the system between in 2009 or 2010.
Currently the state of North Carolina is in debt $2.6 billion dollars to the federal government as a result of high unemployment benefit claims. Lyn Holmes, the Assistant Commerce Secretary, has announced her resignation as a result of criticism on her handling of the division.
Hopefully the next time that a government agency, state or federal, has the opportunity to cut government waste by installing the latest software, they will.