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Inspector General at DHS Placed on Paid Leave Following Report of Welfare Fraud

MPR News reported that Carolyn Ham, the Inspector General (IG) at the Department of Human Services (DHS), has been placed on paid leave pending the outcome of a “probe.” The Inspector General’s office is in charge of protecting welfare programs from illegal activity and fraud. Last week the Office of Legislative Auditor (OLA), released a report that found a “serious rift” between the IG’s office and the DHS investigators tasked with investigating fraud. The report also noted that the IG’s office reported directly to the politically appointed commissioner at DHS and thus, had no independent authority. (The OLA, in a letter to...

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Senate GOP takes action on Child Care Fraud: Calls for DHS Inspector General Ham to Step Down

In response to the legislative audit revealing wide-spread welfare fraud and other illegal activity connected to the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) summarized here, the Senate GOP Leadership sent out this news release last night: Senate Republicans heard legislation yesterday to address the shocking revelations of the Legislative Auditor’s report on the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP).  Four bills in the Human Services Reform Committee focused on increasing oversight and maintaining the integrity of the funding. Senator John Jasinski (R- Faribault) presented two bills to address CCAP fraud. “When the man in charge of investigating CCAP says that fraud could be at least 50% of the entire...

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Poverty, Culture & Marriage

Editor: The following essay by American Experiment Founder and Senior Fellow Mitch Pearlstein, “Poverty, Culture & Marriage,” was released as part of “The Tenth Annual Celebration of John Brandl and His Uncommon Quest for Common Ground,” on November 26, at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. The essay is one of four in a new anthology, Grasping and Reducing Poverty in Minnesota, with the other three by Stephen B. Young of the Caux Round Table, Angelica Klebsch of the Citizens League, and Dane Smith of Growth & Justice.  Featured speakers at the event were Tonya Allen...

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Let’s Help Small Employers Offer 401(k)s But Not at the Expense of My Kids

It has been decades since Congress addressed retirement plans in a comprehensive way; the Left is capitalizing on that by getting states to offer defined benefit plans for low-income private sector employees. Several states including California (of course) have already passed the legislation needed to begin what will essentially become state-managed pensions for everyone. That is a bad idea worth killing by offering a better idea. The President and Congress are thinking about ways to help smaller employers band together so they can offer a retirement plan to their employees but who pays to get this done? Your kids. ...

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Dayton Administration Data Breach Exposes Minnesota’s Most Vulnerable to Identity Theft

Minnesota’s most vulnerable population has been exposed to a data breach at the state agency that is supposed to guard their privacy and well-being. According to a letter mailed to Medicaid recipients on October 9th, the Department of Human Services (DHS) was hacked twice last summer. Sensitive, private information may have been compromised including name, birthdate, Social Security number, home address, telephone number, medical information, educational records, employment records, and/or financial information. ...

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As Minneapolis Government Mulls Supervised Injection Sites, Evidence Suggests They Don’t Work

From 2015 to 2016, opiate-related overdose deaths rose 57.7 percent in Hennepin County (from 97 to 153). As heroin use has become more frequent, City of Minneapolis officials, like city council member Jeremiah Ellison, have urged the city to look into providing supervised injection sites, where opiate use is supervised by medical professionals. Proponents of these sites argue they will reduce overdose deaths and reduce the transmission of diseases commonly spread by unclean needles. However, a recent study examining the scientific literature on this subject found these sites make little to no discernible difference. Vox recently wrote a story detailing the findings of this study: "According to...

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Marriage, Military Service, Black Churches, and More Mundane Founts

In late June, the American Enterprise Institute released a study by three scholars which found “more than one-in-two black men (57%) have made it into the middle class or higher as adults, up from 38% in 1960, according to a new analysis of Census data.”  The researchers, W. Bradford Wilcox of the University of Virginia, Wendy R. Wang of the Institute for Family Studies, and Ronald B. Mincy of Columbia University, also found that the “share of black men who are poor has fallen from 41% in 1960 to 18 percent in 2016.” Surprisingly, this good news generated only one comment...

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Minneapolis ponders new ID Card for Illegal Immigrants and other “Constituencies”

While the City Council and the Mayor may attempt to deflect on this issue, the same residents who can get a Minnesota State ID card would be able to obtain the municipal ID. The only difference with this card is that it would allow illegal immigrants to have a valid form of ID, as well....

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Mrs. Greene Goes to Washington: Trump Administration to Roll Back the Dayton-Smith-DFL Union Dues Skimming Scheme

To be clear, if the Obama rule is fixed, the unions that have been certified would unfortunately continue until they are decertified—that is why MNPCA is not giving up in Minnesota. Decertification is the only way to get rid of these predatory unions; that and a declaration from Congress that they are illegal. But the state of Minnesota could no longer deduct union dues for the SEIU and deposit it in their coffers. ...

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Child Care Welfare Fraud: It’s Not Just Minnesota

Massive fraud in welfare programs intended to subsidize child care for low-income families has been a huge news story in Minnesota, where the scandal has centered on day care operations run by Somali immigrants. It appears that something similar is going on in Nebraska: The heads of four child care centers in Lincoln and Omaha have been indicted on a scheme involving hundreds of thousands of dollars in subsidies. Two men — Seth Mock, the owner of Mock's Loving Life Learning Center in Omaha, and Abdikadir Miji, the owner of Miji Child Care Center in Omaha — are charged with money laundering...

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