Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sen. Lazich Press Release: Troubled by findings of WDVA Veterans Homes audit

Feb. 9, 2011
For immediate release
Contact: Sen. Mary Lazich, (608)-266-5400

State Sen. Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) released the following statement regarding the release of the Legislative Audit Bureau’s report on the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs:

Today, the non-partisan Legislative Audit Bureau released an audit of the Wisconsin Veterans Homes, Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs. There are several very troubling findings in the report.

1.The homes’ operating expenditures have exceeded revenues in four of the last five years.

2. The homes remain solvent largely because of a one-time payment of $20.1 million in Medical Assistance funds the King, Wis. facility received in the 2005-2006 fiscal year. If current trends continue, that money will be exhausted by 2014.

3. The Department of Veterans Affairs took five months to respond to a Legislative Audit Bureau request for a report on the current financial status of the veterans homes and management’s plans for achieving financial solvency. When they finally did respond, their response was without specifics.

The Department of Veterans Affairs management did not provide any analysis or discussion of their balance sheet and other financial documents.
Revenues and expenditures were combined in the financial statements, while separate reporting is essential for understanding their financial status.

The Department of Veterans Affairs cited its strategic plan and a reorganization plan, however, the documents provide general information and do not address important issues raised by the Legislative Audit Bureau.

The Department of Veterans Affairs indicated business plans will be prepared for the homes, however did not provided a clear time frame for completion.

4. State purchasing requirements were not followed for 26 of the 79 purchases we reviewed.

Seeing this report raises concerns about the leadership and future of Department of Veterans Affairs.

Another excellent job by the Legislative Audit Bureau.


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