SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A new audit shows the City of Sacramento made frequent overpayments on health care benefits or made payments to people who weren’t eligible to receive them, costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars.

City auditor Jorge Oseguera said the report shows a pattern of overpayments to Healthnet and Kaiser, with preliminary analysis showing bills may have been overpaid by an average of $68,000 a month, costing a total of $480,000 in 2009 alone.

“There really wasn’t any checks and balances,” Oseguera said. “What we want to do here is identify those areas where there have been lapses… and implement the controls that are necessary to prevent or deter these types of situations from creeping up in the future.”

The report also states that 42 ineligible employees continued receiving benefits, costing the city $750,000. In one case, the ineligible employee received benefits for 19 months after death, costing the city $19,000.

The director of public employees for Local 39 said the news is especially outrageous in light of the approximately $40 million deficit weighing down the city and the severe personnel cuts in recent years.

“The workers are not there because we’ve got these overpaid, incompetent people still managing,” Joan Bryant said.

The full audit can be read here. (.pdf format)

Comments (11)
  1. Greg says:

    This is just typical incompetence by state workers who are in high paying positions and obviously incompetent and should be fired. But instead get to continue making mistakes at the taxpayers expense. And for some reason are being held unacountable for their work negligence. Nice Work contributing to our state deficit instead of helping to repair it.

    1. Mary Orduno says:

      These are City of Sacramento workers not state workers.

    2. Louie says:

      Another reason why I’ll never be in favor of raising taxes. Throwing more money at the problems we see in all levels of our government won’t solve anything.

  2. PETER GRUBER says:

    quit giving our health care to illegal mexicans / criminals

    1. Mary Orduno says:

      From reading the article, it appears they were giving money for benefits to former city employees even after death in some cases. They couldn’t have worked for the City if they were illegal.

  3. Jay Samrari says:

    The managers for these areas need to be fired without any pay, in fact they need to pay the city back for their mistakes. Maybe even audit these managers expenses. I bet not clean??

  4. Mary Orduno says:

    According to the report, the employees were not being paid health benefits directly. Evidently the City was paying for health benefits directly to the health benefit providers, like Kaiser, for ineligible employees. The report clearly states that it was not because of anything the employees did but because the City made errors and the information to terminate the employees coverage was not conveyed to the health care providers. Some employees had left City employment, retired, died, or declined coverage because they were covered by their spouse.

  5. Laszlo says:

    wELL I CAN SAY THERE ARE FLAWS IN THE SYSTEM!! who can we point the finger at to take the blame!?????? The benifits were paid , but to whom? we need to recover the money! it proably went to the health service provider to line there pockets! as fo the management, where are they now? unemployed i hope! It is time to let these people know that working for the government does not equal a free ride and pension for all our troubles! Will this get resolved without spending money?

    1. Kathy says:

      Correction: Melissa Chatham, (24) was beaten to death by her ex-boyfriend in front of his 9-year old son.Our apiolgoes and condolences to Melissa’s family and loved ones.

  6. William Keevers says:

    I am a laid-off City of Sacramento employee. Prior to the adoption of a new financial & human resources computer system, PeopleSoft, I performed this type of work that later went missing, downloading data from a mainframe system, AMS, downloading Kaiser & HealthNet healthcare provider records, and using a database to detect and purge ineligible employees. In 2004 I save the City twice my own pay & benefits, approximately $150,000.

  7. Sepideh says:

    I was wrioednng if you ever thought of changing the structure of your site? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having one or two pictures. Maybe you could space it out better?

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