Labor News From Our Region
Audit finds Missouri Department of Labor unable to accurately report millions in unemployment program financial activities
By TIM ROWDEN
Jefferson City – Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway has issued a report revealing millions in potential inaccuracies by the Department of Labor related to the unemployment insurance system.
The Statewide Single Audit also found a continued failure by the state to properly account for federal dollars used for several state programs.
Galloway said the report details issues resulting from changes to the Unemployment Insurance system at the Department of Labor, which is used to pay unemployment benefits.
The auditor’s office found $2 million in potential inaccuracies because of wrong calculations and inconsistencies.
“Businesses throughout Missouri pay millions into the unemployment system, which is why it is so disconcerting to find that there are funds being managed without proper oversight or accountability,” Galloway said. “Even simple checks and balances have not been implemented, leaving the Department of Labor unable to accurately provide basic financial information.”
Galloway said the new system cost more than $40 million but was not fully developed or tested before implementation. As a result, she said, the Department delayed generating financial reports and provided inaccurate information on required state and federal filings.
The annual audit also noted concerns with other state agencies, hundreds of millions of dollars in questionable costs in social safety net programs, and a lack of accountability in the Department of Mental Health and the Department of Social Services.
“The state spends billions in federal dollars each year that must be managed properly and spent appropriately on programs and services Missourians depend on,” Galloway said. “Failing to properly account for that money can put those dollars, and the programs they support, at risk.”