Welfare Rip Off
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Jan 31, 2013|
A new report says that Massachusetts taxpayers are paying an astonishing $25 million a year to welfare recipients who may not be eligible to collect. We spoke with Massachusetts State Rep. and welfare watch dog Shaunna O'Connell about this report that almost 10 percent of the 51,311 families on welfare collect benefits without having to provide.documentation.
Transcript - will not be 100% accurate
Now there's a there was a new report out there yesterday -- -- and I know I know this world you'll find this extremely shocking. Base state taxpayers are shelling out an honest these staggering 25 million dollars to a year to welfare recipients who might not even be eligible for collect. According to a blistering new report from one of the State's top fraud fighters. The report focused on families with -- at least one child estimated almost 10%. Of the 51311. Families on welfare. Are able to collect are able to collect benefits from the department of transitional assistance without having to provide the right documentation. Is anyone surprised about this I'm just surprised that they're always saying there's 45 million dollars in waste. Joining us now on the line is a -- no coddle the state rep for a month. Plot and who's been not trying to do something about this welfare mass shot China isn't this a eight tiny yeah. Tip of the iceberg figure here that we're talking about 25 million dollars wasted. Well absolutely tip of the iceberg Harry you know I thought we're actually go more than six weeks without another EDT scandal. But we're just not gonna make it against. These these these the the things that get me I mean -- -- -- work I mean we don't we all see this every day I mean it work outside -- recipients work outside jobs welfare violation waste four point four million taxpayers though. In one case PTA never bothered investigating a tip the one woman was -- running that they care so Cairo. They hold more than the 2500 minimum mass 2500 dollar -- Masset one welfare recipient was even -- -- about housing unit collecting a thousand dollars a month rent. Failed to provide X acts adequate proof for forever residency which costs four point form. Billion million. In one staggering example recipient listing his address merely as deceit as appeal boxes allow the collect another was able to claim their child who went to school in Puerto Rico. You know it but isn't the problem that if a if -- if the investigators attempted to follow this up the -- probably find themselves. You know being accused of some kind of I hate crimes by the by by the public sector the the public defenders. Oh yeah you know -- -- how other people that work an -- -- calling me telling me. That they are outraged that they asked to turn air -- -- diet that's what they're told to do. I didn't -- management. It is EPA is yes I'll where agents and it it has got to stop. It's my darling it's if the if the people at the top wanted. To be run this way you can't we call it mismanagement Kenya. Well again I think I can is about you know it's the governor doesn't. Want to -- its partners earned of these -- their time and let these people and it turned a blind. To all of this you know by the without. I got an email from some of the other day I would network's money operatives and they sent to me. China I had to let someone in the program who who gave Social Security number for a seventy year old guy who worked part time at Home Depot. And I had to let her. Into the program it was a war on the. In -- I assume the reason she could never own all Social Security number was because she was an illegal aliens. Well you know. Will never know because they don't check any and. I mean why else would you be if you were a US citizen you can just gonna but he office and got a one a Social Security card right. Actually providing good point absolutely you know if you here lately you have the sense -- security number or maybe she's using more than one and he has got to keep on here doubling up and I think gaming the system has become a perfect. In Massachusetts and people are getting really get out there. Right well there was a story the other day about how the I think it was the I G of the it's social security department and Washington said that there were they were giving away thousands of -- -- social secure it Social Security numbers to to war -- More than 12. The thousands of people. And they and they and they were doing have a same office I mean it was the same thing was going on it was it looked like looked me like what was going on with the registry of motor vehicles where they arrested that guy the other day he. Mean he was giving out hundreds of fake driver's licenses to illegal aliens. Yeah I mean so unfortunately have people that work right here in our state departments helping these people defraud the system. So it's how these people that want it you know that the mister deeds DA together can sit here with a straight face and this band what they're doing. Is beyond me and people have really got to get outraged. Call their representatives. Today tomorrow because I have got legislation I filed -- that will take care of these problems and it it's in his hands. There occasion of assets and identity that would happen before and -- -- -- -- in to any of these programs. We we should ensure that we -- about the that that that hard that we gather the bill that the show that somebody in Pittsfield had 7000 dollars on their right EBT card what did anything ever become a bath. No I that was so what we've got a couple of letters and city DJ that we're still waiting for answers on and -- -- -- stone wall state big. -- -- -- -- great store I would love to find out you know what the what the you know what the highest amount is on -- BT card and you know what like the top. The top 100 Arkansas I'll bet I'll bet that's 7000 is not is not nearly the pop pop pop -- in the whole state of Massachusetts. I'll bet you're right we have our requests in for information we are and a patented do tree in the information perhaps. Even economic they represented at. -- to get this information as you know they guard it like it is now. How about this one failed to prove their child was even related to them a blunder costing seven point four million we've been talking about this a story that was in the -- -- item a couple of weeks ago that now now illegal alien children are just arriving. They said the they just send them across the border and they and they seem to end up in land. And they just that you show up on city hall's doorstep and so we need help and you know we don't have any money we don't speak English. We don't have any relatives here and we just have to be taken care of by the state I mean how many how much how much of this is one. -- -- not checking Social Security number it's clear from that report. They're not checking interrupted how somebody gave -- PO box. As they're drafts they were allowed to get assistance. Very basic continue to do itself verification and where are they do it's not a form it's airlift here. It is much in grants and this is my -- remains and that's acceptable. So I'm you I really that's where the public out there to get behind me because that's how we got it some last year. To get my legislation passed again this year has what I am proposing will fix these problems. Submitted false or misleading information about a spouse they claim to be absent two point nine million and some -- you know that's going to be that's just going to be you know it's got to. You know multiply that by fifty. In some cases women signed affidavits claiming the father was never around only to have a subsequent trial by the same man. Well -- I don't know I mean just reading the things that -- support your child -- -- you know otherwise you probably read this one. Do assets are not counted. When they're trying to figure out if you qualify for assistance. So that they don't include your -- assets. The order and of course the other way the way the other way around that is -- just to work under the table right I mean that's the -- -- and way of all. Yeah I was putting people to buy -- we have been out asset verification where you know -- -- -- on a boat to bail out of our own another house you know. Do they ought to happen. Business certificate here in Massachusetts. It's -- builders like it's something all clues that tell you that this personal living above their means. And those are things that are not being parents are right now they don't even used the registry of motor vehicle information to verify -- People have -- -- The simplest things. The simplest things that basically -- But again the -- you know -- the fish rots from the head as a former governor wants you know and and you have a governor here who doesn't want to do one thing about this problem. If anything he wants that he wants to cut down on the amount it -- Taxes these people. Indirectly pay. By he's street trying to cut the sales tax and increased the income tax though. You know everybody even if you're even if you haven't worked and five generations you have to pay a sales tax -- wants to cut the sales tax on his constituents. In increased the income tax on the people who don't vote for because they have jobs and PayPal sexism and for web. Oh yeah I can't keep cutting its sales tax that you know -- that everybody Kate and he's -- attacks that only hard working. The only and colored people pay out there you know it's there. Hit and it outrageous thing to take two billion dollars out of the economy right now. Everybody's pocket right now. It -- and let us further at a cost jobs it's gonna hurt hardworking families we're not talking about the so called 1% is not that we're talking about people that work hard every day. To support their analysts. And. People don't know what the elderly people and we're building should talk about what bill should mention are sure which they say when they call. So they should say the O'Connell. Homes. CDC. For our bill. The home O'Connell. EDT fraud bill. You know these are just 617 says these are just more anecdotes how -- nothing to get upset about let's keep our focus on high speed rail. Alia yeah. And you know keep buying -- -- -- -- only one program and it's one of the smaller programs. Deputy coupons. Let's talk about the food stamp program the -- program. It that that this this audit that it included that program. So you can imagine. How much more -- areas out and we -- promote the drug rates at my comments here or at least. Either of -- people. Trafficking -- are selling them. Yeah here's one a six oak tree I mean this I've had the same under the same problem or and I and I -- and dozens of people helpful to the same thing I'm just about to tell you. -- I normal woman in New Hampshire who gets SSI and he BT also an SSI check for her kid. She cleans houses and does they carry tried reporting it they don't care that's just that they don't. You know people ask me sometimes do you can you give me a number for the -- online at the at that. The bta I say I can give you want to but I you know I don't want to waste your kind. But he you know it's then -- not to adorn the bank. I know and it they have I never that they don't do anything that's -- you're -- -- police officers. I act here heard from a lot of police officers and they say you know China. We are and we feel like eight beta I was into what they don't do anything about it so it's not even worth all. You know it it really is that we need. A new administration and there so we didn't really get into that program I don't. Out of control and Republicans controlling approach on I mean you have to admit that. Well you know why and and and your your point is well taken but I wasn't here that I'm here now and not Italian and I want excellent. All -- these are caught in the program. Let's see. Let's see how we -- -- and Wakefield who doesn't pay taxes and collects food stamps and goes to food pantries it's just not fair. Of course is just not fair mean this is the way dissuaded you wanna tell talk about the fraud you've seen give us a call 1877469432218774694322. What I don't understand is how how -- how the governor can just like you know I mean how we can just. Not turn totally turn a blind side of this in and nobody nobody -- you know I know there are few people like you know your co sponsor their homes. Who was who's concerned about this but basically did the the Democratic Party who's the majority party in the state. Currency at target turns its back on this stuff they don't king and any even though their constituents I don't -- care. Yet they do and it it's you know -- -- I think people actually getting back docket yet they're afraid to stand up for. For the taxpayers they're afraid that they are not gonna get voted Beckett -- stand up. Hardworking taxpayers at -- and that is totally -- -- Let's hear a lot of my colleagues did supported but stake out leaned on by this. So governor app the last Bennett and some of them have actually and the second downs so we need big -- -- support their constituents they need to know that. They can also has -- -- I think especially isn't like a Republican report -- was issued this was the inspector general I mean this guy is appointed to ease the ease the new guy but he's appointed by Democrats. You know -- person that I. I don't know -- Republican or Democrat but he was picked. By what the the AG who's a Democrat the auditors and Democrat in the were in the governor who's a good -- so he he is. He's beholden to Democrats and he still come out with this report which is again even though it's the tip of the iceberg it's still devastating. Oh eras and I wish you and I am glad that you made here are some of the recommendations he did I am very practiced it and it out to support. It would be nice to do an even larger sample. It's see what's going on this program but how we let me tell you on the docket number from my bill yeah age it's agency. The re re eight. For. 33 H 3384. I reached eight for HD 3384. Okay. Okay Todd your next with how we card represented Sean O'Connell from applaud gore had Todd. Asia from 191000. Of these Elizabeth Warren letters. -- back on deliverable. Two sent out to people -- EDT cards. And the governor fiddle around with it and try to deny there -- able to access to the numbers in the -- -- was swept away. What capital. Yeah apparently there are still scrubbing that list because. I've got an article that -- -- -- -- tugged at just about for more. I've got -- Residents of that information as well and as usual you know there's no longer -- -- -- would go right. But it will never go play until they fix it. You've got to find out too how much how much money some of these people on these cards is that just gonna drive people crazy I mean that's when I saw that number almost fell over 7000 dollar. And like I told me that he he never sent it to me but he said -- -- -- another one another card out this is a Pittsfield the you know you -- yeah. A Pittsfield -- the as a hotbed of welfare abuse -- guess that I guess everywhere is hot bed and he -- that he had seen one out there that had 111000. -- we believe you know any. You know you wonder where these scare comes out and and how they do they're they're they're pretty you know I wish to put much effort into -- it's not been working they did in its campaign. You know you have 70111000. Dollars on Jiri BT cart does it then you've got to have more than one right. Army -- just got to have a bunch government you're just you're just using one to save up some money it's like yeah its like having a savings account. Yes somebody these guys that they -- related drug bust and they get these people they have 345. Of their goal EB -- I hear that from the people that people that work exports of your comments like this out of money don't let another one and then another one and not a lot. And you know I mean we we app that does this is worth repeating. It ruined the integrity the program for the people that really need it and children are all year and our -- -- now because of all of this fraud and abused and people taking up. Precious resources that we really don't have to. Susan you're next with how we car and where president Sean O'Connell go ahead Susan. -- While so called friend. Should not long -- and she has action may. She's gay 425. A month for that eat an electorate. She points and that she has legitimate job for thirty hours a week really I used to work. Then she went under the table and won some a couple of years ago actually making. Seven. He has been -- every week under the table. But army reported a legitimate third. When he talked. I'd talk but that hasn't ultimately her helping her out. I quad section eight housing. -- quarterback. And the girls said wow I don't know what to do it goes. -- for supervised. I've kept trying to -- -- mother -- and -- say not not saying that not -- is not. And now I know it's. -- Adobe Whitey you know I mean that's why that's why don't like about the number anymore I don't like to just at the people's frustrations. You know and and -- the -- -- and shop is in hopes Powell. Then they are living well she is and they need to have top men and she's railroading. And getting on them up -- -- 401. Side was he you know actor -- -- -- And I know not that nobody will do anything about it. I know I got an -- -- -- I hear all the time is when people report tried. So that we need to do out obviously it's a war reporting -- that the I think another step and we need to take next. It's to take that they reporting out of the hands of the people who are administering these programs because they have no reason to want to stop this fraud and abuse. Because the Big Brother program they grow more jobs and they keep their jobs. So we have to take reporting away from adding to the to some independent. Agency or department or outside source or something to get to the -- these. Did you buy guns with the BT cards 774 once and up. -- -- -- It it is illegal to icons with EDT cards however if somebody doesn't report it. Mean like that you could go by you can going to west pawnshop they would know what to buy in right. Rise and it. It is illegal to do about it. Just how -- you -- copy is the is the IG on line is that is our report on line. You know it should be online if you Google. NASA NASA inspector general's office and that would be the best way into a Google mass inspector general's office and -- just clicked for the latest report this of this will be the latest report was only issued. Issued this that this this week. You know what I put it up on my web site to that's a good idea arms on O'Connell dot. On Sean -- dot -- as JU. In two winds are one and -- and two wins in China and two wins in O'Connell. I'm Oakland dot com okay so what they can get you can get your -- up thereof and probably by tomorrow at least. So you don't have that up there by the end of the night you know like how I got to build the first might argue it's 3384. I have another one to reach the reach step eight. So if people call their legislators haven't decide not to those two bills that's what we. It please keep us informed about the 7000 dollar -- yeah I know what is. Yeah. We we just we did -- all of about it not a follow up and we might -- and that doing. Treatment and -- are stuck but I looked up -- to your. Can you imagine this -- Q yeah I mean if you imagine if you know if they if -- a problem with your Amex card -- your arm these are your MasterCard. Could get to the bottom of it in five minutes you know. It did -- -- and they can get the bottom of this -- at five minutes to I think you know or at least five -- -- But they'd say you're right -- they're just they're stonewalling dragging their feet they don't they don't want another -- a series of by headlines. You know but did you know what they're gonna get the they're gonna get the headlines the headlines are gonna come out we're gonna find out how many people have. Have tens of thousands of dollars on these cards and you know not that'll change anything but a little embarrassed the governor and they'll go out there and again and talk about anecdotes and will all -- government. And he want and he won't care -- -- your next with Howie Carr and Sean O'Connell go ahead -- I -- I'm calling from how it I'll stay here -- and I'm in the medical field. I had some client and then and Egypt and their. And by Canada and honored. You know I have a woman separated from the guy -- Q what did you walk trot out for her and I didn't let Cummins girl that I. We're talking with -- that are very bright people. And -- -- may opt to stay and I am I -- I -- you know what you guys do that. She do it would do it she told me it. -- well and I that there are. -- job -- know we change remains that. You don't stay. It's a lot. What is -- that -- They came to met with the can't come to me because they heard there was no work. We're sorry I'm -- kill broke up but there it just yeah I didn't. But I doubt about it good that. -- you know. The country the country has like one over three million jobs are going unfilled and I assume some -- for things like biochemist I mean I think our. Are we looking for some biochemist down here to work in the labs. You know I went to problems down here right. And wait on the governors that we have always got Salmonella -- seldom. They'll figure. -- -- you come over here from Egypt that you'd decide not to work 18774694322. -- in your next with Howie Carr and represented Sean O'Connell go ahead Dan. I that was the thing. How we would -- home that the -- carries its I I had to pull over one point. Secondly I'd like that I think representative. O'Connell in person or over the phone I recently -- FaceBook message sent in from Winthrop. Commentator for the job she's doing. It could interpret them. It was -- -- one of the things address my wife and I queasy. We -- at a local PD. And and it's not like an isolated incident we've been shopping for a good four years that this particular one since it opened. And one of those teams you can tell when people buying things restored because it's like. Cases upon cases of water action cookies and stuff like that. So on I would say -- in three -- dozen occasions. And that conservatively speaking. In the last one took the cake was about probably a month ago we were in line -- kindness can only had a talent in the east and everything. And the woman. And he can count maybe the fight for vending machine tool or convenience store something like that it combines a lot of quality. Well frequently what they do was build up with all these cases so this activity ultimately get through. And then what they'll do it'll take -- to usually ticket EDT I don't swipe at. And then it will knock it down on the -- that was not -- You know add something to while this one took the case because this one. It's quite different the PG -- What's that one and pulled it the second EDT kind -- that put that line. Take note that he -- two guys swiped it put that went away and then talk about what. And then took up a PPP. It's quite did not like that thousand dollar bills or just about. Got a couple hundred bucks and then pulled out one at that particular. Oh my god yes you know what I was saying that people have the report I EDT cards. Yeah what we have it would cut time people called in and said the -- they weren't they they'd seen him up in New Hampshire buying booze. With a Massachusetts EBT -- so they're trying to even beat the sales tax. -- it in Nam in New Hampshire. This I get through before you guys may -- alcohol but I'm much of that that that ban is even working now though is that you -- Well you might expect somebody has report and I think that a lot of people that sell alcohol take it seriously because there are very tough penalties yeah if you get caught Philly -- without sound lighters cigarettes it's a collapse that it's not much. I mean a lot of people Obey that law. The New Hampshire that was what I'm saying we are trying to answer now that we're trying to beat the they they were they were probably trying to beat this the law against selling booze with the BT card they were also trying to beat the bottle bill deposits. You know and then and then you know that that -- in the you're in Florence in you know a new year drinking surveys of the spot for that spot by the taxpayers. It's it's just I don't know it's just it hit it it's so frustrating so frustrating. The other thing Ali that people are doing is coming from New Hampshire and I heard this from another person who works in PTA. Coming from New Hampshire and getting their benefits and Massachusetts. And the cancer that they haven't EDT Hartford answer and EDT -- Massachusetts because there's no residency. Verification. Not only God's. 18 so take -- we appreciate -- beware the you'll have your you'll have this report the IG's report will be up on your website Sean O'Connell dot com but tonight right. This -- well you know everybody really -- About that bill. Okay thanks a lot Jonathan for being with us we'll keep talking about this we come -- but how we -- follow through the cracks. I know I know these these these this is the twelve years of the the bush Reagan administration or whenever they used to call it. What is it now that's it -- -- fifth -- -- the Obama administration. And the abuse goes on -- our --