In early 2022, Illinois’ Office of Executive Inspector General was asked to examine whether employees with the state of Illinois abused the federal taxpayer-funded program. Specifically, the inquiry was if any state employees fraudulently received COVID-19 Paycheck Protection Program loans. No way you say? Way.
The OEIG released the report September 12, 2023 and results aren’t looking good. “To date, the improper loans identified in these founded reports total more than $4.5 million in public funds,” The OEIG reported 438 PPP investigations were initiated. About 200 were concluded with 177 being referred to a law enforcement agency. The fraudsters weren’t just from one state department either. Those that have been identified are:
• 132 Department of Human Services employees
• 25 Department of Children and Family Services employees
• Eight Department of Healthcare and Family Services employees
• Four Department of Employment Security employees
• Three employees from the Department of Public Health
• Three employees from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs
• One at of the Department of Revenue
• One Department of Natural Resources
So far. That’s because the OEIG’s PPP investigation project remains ongoing. OEIG reported that “State employees are expected to maintain the public’s trust and confidence, and misappropriating public funds is far from acting with integrity, or conducting oneself in a manner that reflects favorably upon the State. Acting in such a manner may result in the loss of employment.” May? How about acting in such a manner will definitely result in the loss of employment?
Today’s Fraud of The Day is based on article “Inspector: 177 Illinois state employees commit $4.5 million in PPP fraud ‘so far’” published by the Center Square on September 12, 2023
A total of 177 Illinois state employees have been determined to have obtained Paycheck Protection Program loans based on falsified information. That’s according to the Office of Executive Inspector General, which put the dollar amount of fraud found “so far” at $4.5 million.
The OEIG released the report Tuesday. The summary shows 132 Department of Human Services employees, 25 Department of Children and Family Services employees, eight Department of Healthcare and Family Services employees, four Department of Employment Security employees, three employees each from the Department of Public Health and Department of Veterans’ Affairs and one at each of the Department of Revenue and the Department of Natural Resources have been identified “so far.”