The Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) failed to screen 5,508 workers before giving them access to software that disbursed $39 billion of taxpayer money since March 2020.
An audit released Friday from the Office of Auditor (OAG) General Doug Ringler marked four “material conditions” – the most severe rating – asserting the UIA failed to take multiple safeguards to prevent employees from looting taxpayer money.
Michigan may never know the actual number of deaths resulting from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order to place COVID-19 patients in long-term care (LTC) facilities.
That conclusion was the only verifiable takeaway from Thursday’s Senate and House Joint Oversight Committee meeting, where state senators and representatives grilled Michigan Auditor General Doug Ringler, Deputy Auditor General and Director of Audit Operations Laura Hirst, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Elizabeth Hertel.
The committee meeting spotlighted sharp differences between the Democratic Whitmer administration and the nonpartisan Auditor General (AG). It also brought into stark view thepartisan divisions between Senate and House legislators; namely, Democrats who either disparaged the AG’s methodology or defended Whitmer’s EO 2020-50; and Republicans, who argued the governor erred when she issued the order, and depicted the administration’s underreporting of the number of LTC deaths as a cover-up for her failed policy.
State Auditor Doug Ringler says he will review how many Michiganders died from COVID-19 in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
Ringler wrote the June letter to House Oversight Chair Steve Johnson, R-Wayland, over the concerns of inaccurately counted COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes.
“We will be working with various departments’ databases to address your concerns, which will impact the timing of our work,” Ringler wrote.