Michigan’s Acting Unemployment Director Once Again on Oversight Committee Hot Seat

For the second time since last March, acting Unemployment Insurance Agency chair Liza Estlund Olson testified Thursday morning before the Michigan House Oversight Committee.

Much like her March appearance, Thursday’s testimony prompted scathing commentary from Republican committee members.

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Michigan House Speaker Jason Wentworth Calls on Acting Director of the Unemployment Insurance Agency to Be Removed

Michigan House Speaker Jason Wentworth (R-Clare) urged Governor Gretchen Whitmer to fire Acting Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) Director Liza Olson.

In the statement, Wentworth highlighted several errors and examples of poor management throughout the state agency.

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Michigan Lawmaker Calls on Unemployment Insurance Agency for Answers About Benefit Blunder

Rep. Steve Johnson

The leaders of the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) knew as early as Jan. 6 they erred in developing qualifications for benefits, but didn’t tell the 700,000 Michiganders affected for nearly six months.

The Detroit News first broke the story.

After Jan. 6, the UIA tried to retroactively charge some benefit recipients up to $27,000 for the state’s mistake, instead of admitting it erred.

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Michigan House Oversight Committee Continues Debate on Assuming Subpoena Authority

The Michigan House of Representatives Oversight Committee continued to debate last week whether the committee should grant itself authority to issue subpoenas in specific instances, but postponed a vote until next week’s scheduled meeting.

At its meeting Thursday morning, the committee addressed how broad subpoena authority could be applied to compel testimony from government personnel and agencies. Specifically, the committee resumed its discussion of House Resolution 60, which would authorize the committee to subpoena former Michigan Department and Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon.

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Michigan Investigates Alleged Shakedown By Unemployment Agency Workers Accused of Stealing Benefits

The State of Michigan is investigating whether new employees of the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) are stealing funds from jobless residents, multiple media outlets report.

The workers are accused of stealing and charging clients to receive their benefits more quickly, WDIV reported. This is happening even as Michigan is among several states experiencing fraudulent claims being submitted, and they temporarily stopped payments.

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