State financial oversight strikes again | Arkansas Blog

Friday, February 10, 2012

State financial oversight strikes again

Posted By on Fri, Feb 10, 2012 at 3:09 PM

The Arkansas Human Services Department today formally announced that a new operator was taking over Head Start programs for some 1,700 kids that had been operated by a Russellville organization under two funding sources — state and federal. The operator turns out to have big financial problems. Deficit spending, paycheck withholding not forwarded to proper recipients. That sort of thing.

But I noticed this sentence in the state news release.

Prior to the financial issues that surfaced in January, the program had a history of compliance with state regulations, including licensing and ABC requirements, as well as a high-quality rating for the educational services it provided.

Yeah, and prior to the financial issues that surfaced in the fall, the Forestry Commission had a history of compliance.

And prior to letters written on paper that surfaced in the media few months ago, state Rep. Justin Harris and state Sen. Johnny Key had a record of compliance with state law in operation of their ABC-funded daycare centers. Only thing is, the record was wrong. They were flouting the law that prohibits religious instruction in the taxpayer-funded program. DHS just looked the other way.

Prior to surfacing issues, EVERYONE is in compliance.

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