REPORT DIGEST

 

DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES

 

FINANCIAL AUDIT

and

COMPLIANCE EXAMINATION

For the Year Ended:

June 30, 2006

 

Summary of Findings:

Total this audit†††††††††           12

Total last audit†††††††††           14

Repeated from last audit†††††† 10

 

Release Date:

April 12, 2007

 

State of Illinois

Office of the Auditor General

WILLIAM G. HOLLAND

AUDITOR GENERAL

 

To obtain a copy of the Report contact:

Office of the Auditor General

Iles Park Plaza

740 E. Ash Street

Springfield, IL 62703

(217) 782-6046 or TTY (888) 261-2887

 

This Report Digest and the Full Report are available on

the worldwide web at

http://www.auditor.illinois.gov

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

 

 

 

®      Child welfare and foster care files lacked complete and timely prepared documentation.

 

®      The Department's child abuse investigations did not always fully comply with State law.For instance, the Department:

 

-                      Did not always determine whether reports of child abuse and neglect were "unfounded" or "indicated" within 60 days.

 

-                      Failed to initiate some investigations of child abuse and neglect within 24 hours of receipt.

 

®      All contracts were not reviewed and signed prior to the beginning of the contract period.

 

®      All overtime worked was not evidenced by proper prior approval.

 

®      Annual employee performance evaluations were not completed timely.

 

®      Contracts with residential and group home service providers did not all include measurable criteria necessary to ensure desired results are achieved.

 


DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES

††††††††††††††††††††††††††† † FINANCIAL AUDIT AND COMPLIANCE EXAMINATION

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† For The Year Ended June 30, 2006

 

EXPENDITURE STATISTICS

FY 2006

FY 2005

         Total Expenditures (All Funds)...................

 

$1,241,370,236

$1,237,548,070

†††† OPERATIONS TOTAL.................................

†††††††† % of Total Expenditures........................

$260,258,215

21%

$249,262,539

20%

††††† ††† Personal Services...................................

††††††††††† % of Operations Expenditures...........

††††††††††† Average No. of Employees...............

$178,064,339

68%

3,224

$177,684,580

71%

3,353

†††††††† Other Payroll Costs (FICA,

†††††††† Retirement)....................................................

††††††††††† % of Operations Expenditures...........

 

$28,485,774

11%

 

$41,287,036

17%

†††††††† Contractual Services...............................

††††††††††† % of Operations Expenditures...........

$33,740,238

13%

$11,221,029

4%

†††††††† All Other Operations Items.....................

††††††††††† % of Operations Expenditures......................

$19,967,864

8%

$19,069,894

8%

†††† LUMP SUM AND OTHER PURPOSES TOTAL..........................................................

†††††††† % of Total Expenditures.............................

 

$47,211,080

4%

 

$51,986,414

4%

†††† AWARDS AND GRANTS TOTAL................

†††††††† % of Total Expenditures........................

$933,900,941

75%

$936,299,117

76%

         Cost of Property and Equipment (unaudited).

$30,997,000

$33,722,000

 

SELECTED ACTIVITY MEASURES (unaudited)

FY 2006

FY 2005

         Hotline Calls........................................................

257,481

249,764

         Children served in-

†††† - ††† Regular foster care..........................................

-          Specialized foster care.....................................

-          Relative care...................................................

-          Residential placements.....................................

-          Independent living............................................

 

5,499

3,453

6,182

1,357

916

 

6,104

3,315

6,553

1,374

878

         Finalized adoptions...............................................

1,670

1,867

 

AGENCY DIRECTOR

†††† During Audit Period:Mr. Bryan Samuels

†††† Currently:Mr. Erwin McEwen, Acting (eff. 11-17-06)

 


 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Child case files incomplete and not timely prepared

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All child abuse and neglect determinations not timely completed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Historical Analysis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All child abuse and neglect reports not investigated timely

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Historical Analysis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contracts signed after beginning of contract period

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Overtime approvals missing, incomplete, or late

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Performance evaluations late

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Additional contract provisions needed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS

 

INCOMPLETE AND UNTIMELY CHILD WELFARE AND FOSTER CARE FILES

 

††††† The Departmentís Child Welfare and Foster Care files lacked required documentation and not all case procedures were performed timely.During our review of 60 case files, we noted:

 

-         4 administrative case reviews (ACRs) were not performed.

-         16 ACR notifications were not sent.

-         3 health summaries were not in the file.

-         7 education and development summaries were not in the file.

-         32 medical and dental consent forms were not in the file or were outdated.

-         9 placement and payment authorization forms did not contain all required documentation or were not in the file.

-         26 files did not contain current photographs of the child.

-         34 files did not contain fingerprints of the child.

-         21 files did not contain required permanency hearing information.

-         40 permanency planning checklists were not in the file.

-         4 case entry forms were not in the file.

-         7 child summary forms were not in the file.

-         2 children absent from placement forms were not in the file.

-         15 case review forms were not in the file.

-         27 initial placement checklist forms were not in the file.

 

The Departmentís Administrative Procedures prescribe deadlines and documentation requirements for file maintenance.The failure to follow established Department procedures could result in inadequate care, unauthorized services or misuse of State funds.(Finding 1, pages 11-14)This finding was first reported in 1998.

 

Department officials stated they will continue to stress the importance of adequate and timely documentation for the placement files.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #1.)

 

OVERDUE CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT DETERMINATIONS

 

††††† Reports of child abuse and neglect were not always determined within 60 days as required by the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act.The Act states the Department shall determine, within 60 days, whether a report is "unfounded" or "indicated" and provides that the Department may extend the period up to an additional 30 days for good cause.Department statistics indicate the following noncompliance:

 

††††††††††† ††††††† Total†††††††

††††††††††† †††† Reports†††††† Determinations††† †††††† Percent of

Fiscal†† ††† Requiring†††††††††††††† Not††††††††††††† Determinations

Year††† DeterminationsIn Compliance††††† Not In Compliance

2006††††† †† 66,593††††††††††††††† 1,060†††††††††††††††††††† 1.59%

2005††††† †† 66,550††††††††††††††† 1,140†††††††††††††††††††† 1.71%

2004††††† †† 62,069††††††††††††††† 1,294†††††††††††††††††††† 2.08%

2003††††† †† 58,956††††††††††††††† †† 952†††††††††††††††††††† 1.61%

2002††††† †† 59,080††††††††††††††† †† 492†††††††††††††††††††† 0.83%

2001††††† †† 59,003††††††††††††††† †† 226†††††††††††††††††††† 0.38%

2000††††† †† 61,787††††††††††††††† †† 187†††††††††††††††††††† 0.30%

1999††††† †† 62,054††††††††††††††† 1,502†††††††††††††††††††† 2.42%

1998††††† †† 65,877††††††††††††††† 2,125†††††††††††††††††††† 3.23%

 

††††† Failure to make a determination of a report within 60 days is a violation of the Act, could delay the implementation of a service plan, and could result in further endangerment of the child.(Finding 2, pages 15-16)This finding was first reported in 1998.

 

††††† We recommended the Department determine reports of child abuse or neglect within 60 days as mandated by State law.

 

††††† Department officials stated they will continue in their efforts to be within 100% compliance of the timeframes set forth in the Act.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #2.)

 

 

NEED TO INITIATE INVESTIGATIONS WITHIN 24 HOURS OF RECEIPT

 

††††† The Department did not initiate an investigation of every child abuse and neglect case within 24 hours of receipt of the report as required by the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act.Department statistics indicate the following noncompliance:

 

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††† Investigations†††††††††† †††† Percent of

Fiscal†† ††††† Total††††††††† ††††††† Not†††††††††††††† Investigations

Year††† Investigations††† In Compliance†††††† Not In Compliance

2006††††††† 66,918††††††††††††††† †† 154†††††††††††††††††††† 0.23%

2005††††††† 66,793††††††††††††††† †† 260†††††††††††††††††††† 0.39%

2004††††††† 62,311††††††††††††††† †† 268†††††††††††††††††††† 0.43%

2003††††††† 59,397††††††††††††††† †† 220†††††††††††††††††††† 0.37%

2002††††††† 59,241††††††††††††††† †† 517†††††††††††††††††††† 0.87%

2001††††††† 60,054††††††††††††††† †† 141†††††††††††††††††††† 0.23%

2000††††††† 61,787††††††††††††††† †† 219††††††††††† †††††††† 0.35%

1999††††††† 62,618††††††††††††††† †† 250†††††††††††††††††††† 0.40%

1998††††††† 65,862††††††††††††††† †† 461†††††††††††††††††††† 0.70%

 

††††† Failure to respond to a report of abuse or neglect within 24 hours is a violation of the Act and could result in further endangerment of the child.(Finding 3, page 17)This finding was first reported in 1998.

 

††††† We recommended the Department continue to strive to initiate investigations of all child abuse and neglect reports within 24 hours of receiving the report as mandated by State law.

 

††††† Department officials agreed with the recommendation and stated they will continue to make efforts to be within 100% compliance of the timeframes established.They plan to explore corrective action for employees who fail to comply with the Act.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #3.)

 

UNTIMELY APPROVAL OF CONTRACTS

 

††††† The Department did not have an adequate system in place to ensure that contracts are reviewed and signed on a timely basis.During our review of 20 contracts, we noted that 16 contracts, totaling $40,967,627, were signed after the beginning of the contract period.All contracts must be approved prior to services being performed in accordance with Statewide Accounting Management System procedures.Failure to obtain signed contracts before the beginning of the contract period does not bind the contractor to comply with applicable laws, regulations, and rules and may result in improper and unauthorized payments.(Finding 5, page 19).This finding was first reported in 2002.

 

††††† We recommended the Department approve and sign all contracts before the beginning of the contract period.

 

††††† Department officials agreed and stated they will continue to improve processes that ensure all contracts are approved and signed before the beginning of the contract period.They provided statistics showing improvement in Fiscal Year 2006.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #4.)

 

 

EMPLOYEES WORKED OVERTIME WITHOUT PROPER PRIOR APPROVAL

 

††††††† Department employees worked overtime without proper prior approval.Department policy requires supervisory approval of overtime before it is worked.We selected a sample of 32 employees and reviewed each personís overtime during May 2006.Overtime was incurred on 28 days for those employees.We noted:

 

-         overtime approval was not documented for 2 days,

-         overtime approval forms for 8 days were signed from 1 to 65 days after it was worked,

-         an overtime approval form for 1 day was signed, but not dated,

-         overtime incurred on a call-back basis for 10 days had inadequate approval documentation, and

-         overtime incurred on a call-back basis for 3 days was approved from 47 to 49 days after it was worked.

 

Failure to obtain proper prior approval for overtime may result in an employee being compensated for overtime not actually performed or warranted.During fiscal year 2006, $3,354,286 was paid to 1,884 employees for overtime.(Finding 7, pages 21-22)This finding was first reported in 2002.

 

††††† We recommended the Department strictly enforce its policies and procedures in regards to timekeeping and overtime.

 

††††† Department officials agreed and stated they will remind supervisors to review, approve, and date requests for overtime timely as required.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #5.)

 

EMPLOYEE EVALUATIONS NOT TIMELY

 

††††† Annual employee performance evaluations were not completed on a timely basis.In our sample of 32 employees, we noted 15 performance evaluations performed during FY 06 were from 11 to 198 days late, and 12 employees did not receive an evaluation during the current year.

 

††††† The Illinois Administrative Code states that performance evaluations should be considered when determining salary increases, promotions, layoffs, discipline, and other changes in an employeeís status.The Department has an internal policy requiring evaluations on at least an annual basis.Delays in completing performance evaluations cause the payroll department to manually calculate lump sum salary adjustments.Manual calculations are not only time consuming but are also more prone to errors.(Finding 9, page 24)This finding was first reported in 2005.

 

††††† We recommended the Department strictly enforce the existing policies regarding timely completion of performance evaluations.

 

††††† Department officials agreed and indicated steps will be taken to streamline the evaluation process.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #6.)

 

INADEQUATE CONTRACT PROVISIONS

 

††††† The Departmentís contracts with residential and group home service providers did not all include measurable criteria necessary to ensure desired results are achieved.In a sample of 12 such contracts we noted that 4 did not include specific, measurable criteria within the contract.The Department created the Residential Performance Monitoring Unit (RPMU) to conduct on-site monitoring of the facilities that provide treatment for children.Any deficiencies identified in the site visits are communicated to the Departmentís Division of Placement and Permanency which either directs the RPMU to increase the monitoring of the deficient provider or program consultants are utilized.

 

††††† Department officials stated that they are in the process of modifying residential care contracts to include monitoring and participation requirements that were recommended by the RPMU.The absence or insufficiency of these contract requirements could lead to disputes with providers and impede the Departmentís ability to effectively monitor programs.(Finding 10, pages 25-26)This finding was first reported in 2003.

 

††††† We recommended the Department continue in its efforts to develop and include measurable criteria and participation requirements in its contracts with residential and group home service providers.

 

††††† Department officials agreed with our recommendation.(For the previous agency response, see Digest Footnote #7.)

 

 

OTHER FINDINGS

 

††††† The remaining findings are reportedly being given attention by the Department.We will review progress toward the implementation of our recommendations during the next examination.

 

 

 

 

AUDITORSí OPINION

 

††††† Our auditors stated the Department's June 30, 2006 financial statements are fairly presented in all material respects.

 

 

 

 

____________________________________

WILLIAM G. HOLLAND, Auditor General

 

WGH:KMA:pp

 

 

SPECIAL ASSISTANT AUDITORS

 

††††† Our special assistant auditors were Sleeper, Disbrow, Morrison, Tarro & Lively, LLC.

 

 

 

DIGEST FOOTNOTES

 

#1:INCOMPLETE AND UNTIMELY CHILD WELFARE AND FOSTER CARE FILES - Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees and will continue to stress the importance of adequate and timely documentation for the placement cases identified by the auditorís findings as well as for all child and family cases.

 

#2:OVERDUE CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT DETERMINATIONS - Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees and will continue to make diligent efforts to be within 100% compliance of the timeframes set forth in ANCRA for making final determinations.

 

#3:NEED TO INITIATE INVESTIGATIONS WITHIN 24 HOURS OF RECEIPT - Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees with the recommendation and plans to explore corrective action for employees who fail to initiate investigations within the 24-hour timeframe.

 

#4:UNTIMELY APPROVAL OF CONTRACTS - Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees and will continue to improve processes that ensure that all contracts are approved and signed before the beginning of the contract period.In FY 06, our revised procedures, which included completion of the required Procurement Business Cases, resulted in 1,031 contracts being mailed to providers prior to July 1, an increase of 532 from FY 05.Comparison of the number of contracts returned and processed also shows improvement, as follows:

 

Contracts Processed††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† FY 06††††††††††††††††††††† FY 05

Prior to July 1††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 196††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††† 0

Within 30 days of July 1†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 879††††††††††††††††††††††† 577

Within 60 days of July 1†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 421††††††††††††††††††††††† 642

Within 90 days of July 1†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 189††††††††††††††††††††††† 398

 

#5:EMPLOYEES WORKED OVERTIME WITHOUT PROPER PRIOR APPROVAL - Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees that no employee should be compensated for overtime unless it was worked and authorized.We will work to remind supervisors to review, approve, and date requests for overtime timely in accordance with Department procedure and/or supplemental labor agreements.

 

#6:EMPLOYEE EVALUATIONS NOT TIMELY- Previous Agency Response

 

The Department agrees that performance evaluations should be completed timely.With the recent (December 2005) announcement of pay raises, an intense effort has been undertaken to see that all evaluations are brought up to date.

 

#7:INADEQUATE CONTRACT PROVISIONS Ė Previous Agency Response

 

The Department plans to continue its efforts to include measurable criteria and participation requirements in all its contracts with residential and group homes service providers.We expect that the finalization of these efforts will be completed in the later part of 2006.