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DSHS: Don’t buy into Carrell’s political class-baiting

Letter by Bernice I. Larsen, Puyallup on Feb. 7, 2011 at 1:21 pm with 14 Comments »
February 7, 2011 1:23 pm

I remind people that Mike Carrell’s Viewpoint on welfare fraud and abuse (TNT, 2-6) is just that – an opinion, despite his assumption of fact. With the middle class struggling how easy it is to turn that frustration and anger on the poor instead of the movers and shakers of our monetary system.

Using welfare money at adult-oriented locations, tattoo parlors, gun shops and liquor stores needs to be stopped, but Bill 5327 needs to have the fine print checked over. Moving the Fraud Early Detection investigators to the auditor’s office, indicating DSHS is not doing its work, is political gaming. Makes me wonder what else is in Bill 5327.

Even with budget cuts, more is required of DSHS workers with the depression, employment probably being over 20 percent in reality and now even children are living on the streets. Carrell’s attack on DSHS workers is unwarranted and politically motivated.

The poor do not have the market cornered on fraud and abuse. The higher income levels have as much and in greater monetary amounts. Bernie Madoff is just one example that got caught.

People who have critical thinking skills will not buy into Carrell’s political class-baiting.

Leave a comment Comments → 14
  1. So I guess it’s not a fact that people are using their food stamp money for gambling, right? Why didn’t DSHS catch this long ago? Let’s stop trying to justify the un-justifiable.

  2. northsc says:

    The recession we are in, and dwindling tax revenues, is going to drive the train on this issue. I’ll bet when DSHS workers see that it might come down to either being better stewards of ever less and less funding , or their own jobs could be cut, you will see a bit more self-preservation from DSHS workers being a great motivator to making the system more accountable..

  3. cclngthr says:

    I think the welfare system should hold its recipients more accountable where they spend the cash. Having a limit of where they make transactions is the way to do things.

    In my personal financial method, I only use cash for a very limited purpose. All transactions usually go through my financial institution directed by me. I have a history of what I spend, where it goes to and what it is for on my statement each month. I don’t see why the state can require this of its clients.

  4. taxedenoughintacoma says:

    You can see food stamp cash cards being sold in the tribal casinos for a lot less than face value. Then the card holder tells the state they lost their card and need a replacement fully loaded with funds.

    This happened over 100,000 last year, statewide. This has to stop and Mr. Carrell’s bill is a good start. Lets support the bill and Mike Carrell. Our state’s welfare programs are ripe with fraud, waste and abuse.

  5. surething says:

    I personally think vouchers should be given in lieu of cash.

  6. nwcolorist says:

    The issue of Mike Carrell’s article was fraud, not “political class baiting”. Crooks are ripping off the hard working taxpayers.

  7. Again, I must state that Mike Carrell, even though he is my representative, is a ploitical opportunist whose holier than thou methods are repugnant. He shows no direct PROOF of any of his allegations. He is trying by innuendo and rumor to stir up a constiuency in ordre to keep him in his warm, fat, well-staffed office unril he can collect the ultimate staye pension with attendant medical benfits. You don’t call this welfare?

  8. Olemag
    You need to start watching King 5 news or go on their web site the proof is there. I for 1 i’m tired of those on food stamp buying cigarettes, alcohol, soda pop, starbucks & chip and dip with the hard working taxpayers money MY WIFE AND I WORK FOR SOME OF THOSE THING SO SHOULD THEY.

  9. eagle_beak says:

    i like mike carrell and i like this bill. i hope it passes.

  10. harleyrider1 says:

    I support Mike. Brian Sonntag would not let this kind of fraud and lax investigation stand under his watch. Our Auditor is one of the best. Move it there Mike and let’s see if it will serve the taxpayers better.

  11. aislander says:

    The writer is correct: we should not look askance at DSHS or any of its activities. I’m certain it represents only a negligible portion of the state budget…

  12. lawrencejprice says:

    I think Bernice Larsen is protesting far too much, especially concerning the move of the fraud investigators. I wonder why. Now that the facts are out, and it’s clear as day that casinos are accepting welfare cards for gambling. Obviously this has been going on for years and DSHS hasn’t the skills or intention to correct the problem in spite of their own fraud detection division. Obviously fraud investigation doesn’t belong in DSHS, fox guarding the henhouse anyone? It’s long past time to get the AG involved by using professional fraud investigators to fix the problem. Obviously the casinos are just as guilty for aiding and abetting fraudulent activities. It only seems fair that for every card processed by any casino the state should be reimbursed for the full face value of that card. Don’t stop with the casinos, any establishment that accepts a card for other than its intended purpose should refund to the state full face value of the card as issued. While the AG office is at it, a hard look needs to be directed to DSHS directors and managers who knew about this issue, and did not act. Show them the door.

  13. “Bill 5327 needs to have the fine print checked over”

    Nope, ‘we need to pass it to find out what’s in it’ ;)

  14. MalcolmRussell says:

    This letter… I am completely amazed to be able to find (and see published) a critic of greater accountably and a defender of obvious EBT abuse, it is truly mind boggling, is it just a joke, or is all hope for pragmatic reform in state gov’t already lost and gone forever?

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