April 27, 2012
Stephanie Smiley, 608-266-1683

Statement from Secretary Dennis G. Smith on FoodShare Audit

MADISON-Department of Health Services Secretary Dennis G. Smith today offered the following statement on the Legislative Audit Bureau's (LAB) review of the FoodShare program:

"We appreciate the work LAB has done for this evaluation. Thanks to the commitment of Governor Walker and the Legislature to make investigating fraud a priority, the Department has made important progress to improve the integrity of the FoodShare program, including the creation of the Office of Inspector General, implementing a new Fraud Prevention and Investigation (FPIP) model, and working to pursue vendor fraud. However, we also realize those are just the first steps to truly reform how the program operates.

The report provides us with a comprehensive overview and recommendations for program improvement. LAB's insight will assist us in our efforts to ensure the program is operating as it should be and that the correct benefits are provided to the right people. We also will use this information to ensure that the people who receive the benefits are using them in an honest way and we're continuing to work with the USDA to pursue vendors who may be defrauding the system. We look forward to providing a report to the Joint Legislative Audit Committee in December regarding our success in implementing the LAB recommendations as well as our own initiatives to improve the FoodShare program."