NASHVILLE – TSEA is disappointed to hear today’s report of potential oversight failures by the Department of Human services pertaining to the distribution of federal food program funds. We agree with the comptroller’s report that the department is ultimately responsible for providing proper oversight and implementing effective controls over the distribution of funds from these programs; however, it is important that taxpayers realize it is the private sector that is intentionally defrauding the public, not DHS.
“It is unfortunate that some private sector organizations that contract with our state are so immoral that they are stealing money intended to buy food for needy children,” TSEA Government Affairs Director Randy Stamps said. “It is a shame that the public discussion is centered on placing blame for this issue on DHS for low staffing or inadequate oversight, when we should be focused on rooting out these private companies who are stealing from taxpayers. DHS does need to continue to improve its oversight efforts, but that is only because of a culture of fraud and abuse within some of the private organizations who contract with our state.”