Faulty Florida system sent benefits to inmates, the deceased

Faulty Florida system sent benefits to inmates, the deceased

Florida's Agency for Workforce Innovation, which operates the state's Unemployment Compensation System, sent benefit checks to prison inmates and dead people because of poor system controls, state auditors said.

In a report released this month, auditor general William O. Monroe said the unemployment compensation agency had not corrected problems identified in a previous audit. In fiscal 2000, the agency issued 278 payments totaling $104,691 to persons shown as deceased by the Office of Vital Statistics, the auditors said.

In the same period, the agency issued 1,904 payments, for $692,574, to persons shown as incarcerated by the state's Stop Inmate Fraud program.

Auditors also found that the work force agency had not conducted a risk analysis of the unemployment compensation system, that systems security needed improvement and that Florida statutes should be amended to improve oversight of the program.

In a written response to the audit findings, work force agency officials largely concurred and said they were working to prevent improper benefit payments and improve the unemployment compensation system.

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