Friday, August 21, 2009

Social Services Financial Management Undergoing Major Review

Client Services Will Not Be Impacted

Mayor Dwight C. Jones’ administration announced today efforts to reorganize the Richmond Department of Social Services and to correct what has been determined to be major financial management failures. This week the administration became aware of billing errors that have been generated by the department to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

“We’ve identified financial management failures that have resulted in an estimated $3.8 million in over billing to the Commonwealth of Virginia. We’ve already begun the process of correcting the billing with the proper State representatives and we're working closely with the City's Auditor,” said City Chief Administrative Officer Byron Marshall. “This management failure has highlighted for us an area of City government that must be retooled. We have no evidence that any of this is based in fraud or corruption, but rather poor management and record keeping which indicates a need to make significant procedural changes and improve the department’s operations.”

Personnel changes have already begun and both a management review and an internal audit are underway. Also, the City in recent weeks has been reviewing a number of strong candidates for the vacant position of Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Human Services.

“I want the CAO to continue to move expeditiously to fill this key position. This situation underscores the importance of the leadership that must be put in place for this critical City function,” said Mayor Jones. “I’m confident that we have begun to put the right changes in place to correct this management failure. I've made it clear from the beginning of this administration that operational efficiency is one of my highest priorities and we will continue to address any inefficiency that becomes apparent."

Contact: Tammy Hawley, (804) 636-3110