Report 2016-128 Recommendations

When an audit is completed and a report is issued, auditees must provide the State Auditor with information regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year. Additionally, Senate Bill 1452 (Chapter 452, Statutes of 2006), requires auditees who have not implemented recommendations after one year, to report to us and to the Legislature why they have not implemented them or to state when they intend to implement them. Below, is a listing of each recommendation the State Auditor made in the report referenced and a link to the most recent response from the auditee addressing their progress in implementing the recommendation and the State Auditor's assessment of auditee's response based on our review of the supporting documentation.

Recommendations in Report 2016-128: In‑Home Supportive Services: The State Could Do More to Help Providers Avoid Future Payment Delays (Release Date: March 2017)

Recommendations to Legislature
Number Recommendation Status

To facilitate providers' efforts to report their time, and to reduce the potential for providers to be inadvertently suspended from the IHSS program, the Legislature should amend state law to define the pay period as two workweeks. Moreover, the Legislature should modify state law to require weekly hours as the basis for authorizing services but continue to allow flexibility for recipients to adjust the hours their providers work across workweeks in a manner similar to the provisions of the current law.

Recommendations to Social Services, Department of
Number Recommendation Status

To ensure that counties are handling timesheet exceptions consistently and minimizing delays, Social Services should develop and issue procedures by July 2017 to require the counties to first attempt to correct timesheet errors for specific types of exceptions before mailing blank replacement timesheets to providers. Additionally, Social Services should review a random sample of exceptions at least quarterly to ensure that the counties are following its new procedures.


To reduce the likelihood of inadvertent errors on replacement timesheets, Social Services should create functionality within CMIPS II to allow replacement timesheets to be printed with data that had been submitted correctly on the original timesheet. Social Services should develop a plan by August 2017 that outlines actions, such as assessing the cost and seeking funding from the Legislature if necessary, that will be taken to create the functionality.


To ensure that counties follow a consistent and expeditious policy for responding to providers who report lost or stolen paychecks, Social Services should issue a policy by September 2017 that allows providers to request replacement paychecks after five business days from the issue date of the lost or stolen paychecks.


To assist counties in resolving exceptions efficiently and in managing their workload, Social Services should by December 2017 develop a timesheet exceptions report in CMIPS II that enables county staff to categorize common exceptions, identify providers with recurring exceptions, and track timesheet processing workload over a period of time. Social Services should also train county staff on the most effective use of these reports.


To effectively communicate information to providers and reduce call volumes at counties, Social Services should implement functionality within CMIPS II by December 2017 to provide automated notifications to providers about the status of their timesheets and paychecks, including when timesheets are received and processed, when paychecks are processed, and whether there are exceptions on timesheets that would delay processing paychecks and whom to contact at the county to address those exceptions.


To ensure that HPE is meeting its contractual requirements, Social Services should review timesheet processing data and reports and follow up with OSI to make sure it is taking corrective action if HPE exceeds the agreed-upon processing time frames.


To ensure that OSI is adequately monitoring HPE and to allow for more proactive management of the IHSS program, Social Services should work with OSI to enforce the contract provision requiring HPE to submit monthly data on the number of timesheets with exceptions by county and the time taken to resolve those exceptions. Moreover, Social Services should develop a process for regularly reviewing these data to detect any discrepancies among the counties' processes for handling timesheets with exceptions.


To enable it to track whether EDD is meeting its contractual time frame for printing and mailing timesheets, Social Services should either modify its current agreement or require in the renewal of its agreement a method for tracking the time required to print and mail timesheets. Social Services should also perform monthly reviews of the activities performed by EDD and SCO to ensure compliance with the time frames for each agreement. Additionally, Social Services should implement a process to regularly test EDD and SCO processes to ensure that they are within the required time frames.


To more effectively address common problems reported by providers and recipients, Social Services should develop a formal process to document and address patterns of concerns conveyed through complaints. Specifically, the process should include a method for Social Services to identify and aggregate the complaints it receives, to analyze that information to determine whether there are common themes or broader issues to address within IHSS, and to obtain sufficient information to substantiate responses to the complaints. The process should also include steps to clarify ambiguous issues raised in the complaints and define clear deadlines and the steps to take when responding to complainants if those deadlines cannot be met.


Until state law is changed to facilitate providers' efforts to report their time and to reduce the potential for providers to be inadvertently suspended from the IHSS program, Social Services should inform providers of the weekly maximum number of service hours for each variation in the length of the month, rather than using a standard conversion that results in providers claiming more hours than their recipients are authorized.


If the Legislature amends state law as we recommend, Social Services should modify the timesheet format to incorporate the weekly authorization for services and the new two-workweek pay period. Social Services should also reconfigure its timesheet to require that all information be entered on one side of the document, including the signatures of the provider and recipient.


To ensure that it can quickly identify potential concerns with the number of timesheets received at the TPF, Social Services should develop procedures to review its timesheet volume report on a daily basis. Alternatively, Social Services could work with OSI to modify the reporting function within CMIPS II to require automated notifications to management when the timesheet volume report identifies an instance when the volume of timesheets falls below the threshold specified.

Recommendations to Systems Integration, Office of
Number Recommendation Status

To ensure that HPE is meeting its contractual obligation for processing timesheets, OSI should monitor whether the TPF is processing timesheets within five business days, assess penalties when warranted, and report the results of this monitoring to Social Services on a monthly basis.


To ensure that the reports it receives from HPE are complete and allow it to better manage CMIPS II and support the IHSS program, OSI should enforce its agreement requiring HPE to submit monthly data on the number of timesheets with exceptions by county and the time taken to resolve them.

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