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  1. #1 Dead farmers still cashing checks. 
    Sin City Moderator RobJohnson's Avatar
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    The federal government is still paying out millions of dollars a year in subsidies to dead farmers, according to a new government audit released Monday that said the Agriculture Department doesn’t do routine checks required to make sure it is paying benefits to the right people.

    The Government Accountability Office said that from 2008 to 2012 one agency, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, made $10.6 million payments on behalf of more than 1,100 people who’d been dead at least a year. Another branch, the Risk Management Agency, paid out $22 million to more than 3,400 policyholders who’d been dead at least two years.

    Some of the payments may have been legal because they were for work done before the farmers died, but GAO said the problem is the two agencies don’t perform the routine checks — such as looking at the Social Security lists — to see.

    “Until and unless NRCS and RMA develop and implement procedures to have their payment or subsidy data records matched against SSA’s complete death master file, either through coordination with FSA or on their own, these agencies cannot know if they are providing payments to, or subsidies on behalf of, deceased individuals; how often they are providing such payments or subsidies; or in what amounts,” the investigators wrote.

    GAO said the Agriculture Department has shown some progress since a previous audit found hundreds payments to 172,801 dead people, totaling some $1.1 billion, between 1999 and 2005.


    Read more: http://nation.foxnews.com/2013/07/29...#ixzz2aZ3sjBrU
    Last edited by ralph wiggum; 07-30-2013 at 05:23 PM. Reason: Title fixed
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  2. #2  
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    That was pretty interesting, heard it spoken about earlier today on Bloomberg radio.

    I'm still not sure how to interpret it though.
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  3. #3  
    Ancient Fire Breather Retread's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artois View Post
    ...................

    I'm still not sure how to interpret it though.
    What part needs interpretation? It's gubmint fraud and waste without proof of liability.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retread View Post
    What part needs interpretation? It's gubmint fraud and waste without proof of liability.
    I agree, it's waste and potentially representative of poor auditing controls. Key word is potentially.

    When ever we're given numbers, without the context, I believe we're at a loss. Considering the sheer volume and magnitude of subsidies we dole out to farmers, the percentage of fraud or waste is a bit more important, as a metric for measuring the effectiveness.

    $10.6M over 4 years and $22M over 2 years, to less than 5k farmers, may be a ridiculously low percentage of waste/fraud.

    Certainly, a reasonable attempt should be made to control all waste and fraud. I'd vigorously support an investigation into this along with an investigation of the controls in place to ensure subsidies end when farmers past on.

    For what it's worth, this doesn't necessarily imply that there was fraud. If farms passed on to family members, it really could amount to merely paperwork issues - with the actual subsidies still going to the farms as intended.

    Hence... I'm not sure how to interpret this. Shrugs.
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    PORCUS MAXIMUS Rockntractor's Avatar
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    The difference between pigs and people is that when they tell you you're cured it isn't a good thing.
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  6. #6  
    Sin City Moderator RobJohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artois View Post
    That was pretty interesting, heard it spoken about earlier today on Bloomberg radio.

    I'm still not sure how to interpret it though.
    The libertarian in me would think the subsidies should be eliminated for all farmers, dead or alive.
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  7. #7  
    Sin City Moderator RobJohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artois View Post
    I agree, it's waste and potentially representative of poor auditing controls. Key word is potentially.

    When ever we're given numbers, without the context, I believe we're at a loss. Considering the sheer volume and magnitude of subsidies we dole out to farmers, the percentage of fraud or waste is a bit more important, as a metric for measuring the effectiveness.

    $10.6M over 4 years and $22M over 2 years, to less than 5k farmers, may be a ridiculously low percentage of waste/fraud.

    Certainly, a reasonable attempt should be made to control all waste and fraud. I'd vigorously support an investigation into this along with an investigation of the controls in place to ensure subsidies end when farmers past on.


    For what it's worth, this doesn't necessarily imply that there was fraud. If farms passed on to family members, it really could amount to merely paperwork issues - with the actual subsidies still going to the farms as intended.

    Hence... I'm not sure how to interpret this. Shrugs.
    It's illegal to cash a check made out to a dead person! The check should be returned. Subsidies are not inherited, they have to be applied for.

    The audit in 2009 showed 1.1 billion in payments to the dead!
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobJohnson View Post
    It's illegal to cash a check made out to a dead person! The check should be returned. Subsidies are not inherited, they have to be applied for.

    The audit in 2009 showed 1.1 billion in payments to the dead!
    Well, it is in line with the dead voting so there's that.
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  9. #9  
    Sin City Moderator RobJohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJCardFan View Post
    Well, it is in line with the dead voting so there's that.
    Yup.
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  10. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobJohnson View Post
    The libertarian in me would think the subsidies should be eliminated for all farmers, dead or alive.
    Wholeheartedly agree.
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