Letters to the Editor

State: Audit leaves him wondering

I do not know how many news media sources are making this kind of information available to the citizens of this great state of Washington so here is some information I have discovered by reading our State Auditor’s recent report.

1. In the last year of the budget cycle the state spent 1.1 billion dollars more than the actual revenue.

2. $275,126 in fraud was uncovered in state agencies in 2000-2001. I thought people went to jail for fraud. Have any of you heard about any state employees being prosecuted for fraud?

3. In 1996 the Legislature passed a bill mandating all of the 162 state agencies have an internal audit function. To date only 48 agencies have complied with the law. I wonder if 70 percent of the business in our state could not file their B&O tax and get away with it? Why are 70 percent of the state agencies not obeying the law and getting away with it for six years? I understand the State Patrol will get SUV’s and sport cars for undercover patrol work. Maybe they could slip up on the agencies that are in violation.

4. Individuals ineligible for health insurance are asking and receiving it anyway. The health authority does not know how much it overpaid individuals.

5. On July 2, 2001, $48,552 in checks were discovered missing from DSHS. The funds have not been recovered.

6. The Liquor Board cannot properly account for $421 million in sales.

7. Drugs are missing or misappropriated from Western State Hospital.

8. For the 14th year in a row, money collected from ferry passengers cannot be accounted for.

Is anyone in charge here?

Bill Underwood


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