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#1490907 --- 10/20/16 08:07 AM D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
The Cayuga County D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud cases and hasn't done so all year. D.A. Budelmann wants Social Services to pay him to prosecute these cases. As the county struggles with revenue shortfalls, as the county considers a motor vehicle tax and at a time when Budelmann has gotten a hefty raise on another unfunded state mandate that brings county district attorney's salaries in line with county judges, Budelmann wants another county agency to pay his office for doing the job he is already paid to do.

There are numerous people who can be prosecuted right now. There is thousands and thousands of dollars that can be recovered. Thousands of taxpayer dollars that went to people who defrauded the system and the county isn't getting that back because the D.A. won't prosecute these cases.

The taxpayers get shafted because the D.A. is throwing a temper tantrum because he thinks Social Services should pay him extra. That's like paying a fire department tax and the fire department won't put out your fire until you pay them extra.

Concerned taxpayers should call the D.A.'s office and tell Budelmann to do his job for which he was elected to do.

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#1490923 --- 10/20/16 10:57 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
http://auburnpub.com/news/local/cayuga-c...7f32268c38.html

And so it continues. The county is looking to tax the residents even more and yet they do nothing about the D.A. not prosecuting welfare fraud and recovering all that stolen money. All because the D.A. wants Social Services to pay him to do his job and prosecute fraud cases.

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#1490985 --- 10/22/16 08:16 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2613
Loc: Yates County
WOW--The Cayuga County D.A.'s salary is fixed by the state. He makes the same as every other county D.A. in the state. Even tiny Yates County's D.A. prosecutes welfare fraud cases that are referred from the Yates County S.O.

In the past defendants are charged with a felony and routinely allowed to plead to a misdemeanor along with full restitution.

The taxpayers should send the D.A. packing come election time if he is refusing to do his job!!!
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"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1491004 --- 10/23/16 07:33 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Auburnite13021 Offline
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Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
Since he refuses to prosecute the county is losing out on recovering all that money that these people stole. It's outrageous. The county legislators are quick to look for ways to keep taxing us but don't seem to be doing anything about this problem.

I'm hoping to get the word out so come election time the people will choose a person who will do their job.

Thank you sir for weighing in on this.

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#1491009 --- 10/23/16 09:14 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Timbo Offline
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Registered: 07/18/12
Posts: 12814
Loc: CNY

Since the National Average for welfare fraud is 1.9%, and since prosecuting those close to or below the poverty rate (as those who MAY be guilty of such fraud almost certainly ARE), would it be to the benefit of taxpayers to expend yet more money prosecuting such cases, assuming the $ could even be recouped. Legal costs are most likely not recoverable.

While fraud of this type is certainly a serious issue, not ALL fraud is created equally. Corporate and Political Fraud costs taxpayers an order of magnitude to that of Welfare fraud.

Perhaps the county sees no advantage in spending dollars in search of dimes. Even if to make a public example.

I submit that prosecuting the larger fraud would be a matter of practicality, justice and the greater good.

Just a thought.
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#1491020 --- 10/23/16 10:47 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
The D.A. gets paid good money to prosecute crime. He shouldn't avoid prosecuting these crimes because he thinks Social Services should pay his office to do so.

As Mean Gene said these people pay restitution and that goes back to the county since they stole it to begin with.

I shouldn't have to pay higher taxes because these thieves won't be prosecuted, the D.A. feels the need to extort money from another government agency and the county legislators refuse to do anything about it.

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#1491023 --- 10/23/16 11:40 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Auburnite13021 Offline
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Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
When an elected official who gets paid to do a job and refuses to do that job because he is trying to get more money out of another government agency is extortion. It's corruption.

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#1491043 --- 10/23/16 07:35 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Timbo Offline
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Registered: 07/18/12
Posts: 12814
Loc: CNY
Originally Posted By: Auburnite13021
When an elected official who gets paid to do a job and refuses to do that job because he is trying to get more money out of another government agency is extortion. It's corruption.

Assuming that that's in fact, what's going on, here.
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#1491053 --- 10/23/16 09:30 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
LittleKing Offline
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Registered: 05/08/01
Posts: 163
Originally Posted By: Auburnite13021
When an elected official who gets paid to do a job and refuses to do that job because he is trying to get more money out of another government agency is extortion. It's corruption.



It doesn't sound like he's asking for a raise at all. It sounds like he's asking for more money in his budget to fund prosecutions caused by another agency's failure to properly safeguard public funds in the first place.

Which one of your relatives is planning to run against him? That's what this is all about isn't it?

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#1491054 --- 10/23/16 10:02 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: LittleKing]
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
Originally Posted By: LittleKing


It doesn't sound like he's asking for a raise at all. It sounds like he's asking for more money in his budget to fund prosecutions caused by another agency's failure to properly safeguard public funds in the first place.

Which one of your relatives is planning to run against him? That's what this is all about isn't it?


He already got a nice raise. Auburn PD doesn't pay him extra to prosecute crimes. Neither do Weedsport or Port Byron Police. He gets paid to prosecute crimes. If he needs more money in his budget then he should request an increase and be able to justify it.

Social Services has people in place who work to properly safeguard public funds by building cases against those who stole those public funds. To do so they need the D.A. to do his job for which he is paid to do and prosecute those who stole.

What this is all about is the D.A. who is not doing his job. What this is all about is the county looking to raise fees and taxes when there is thousands upon thousands of dollars that can be recovered and returned to the county coffers if the D.A. would simply do his job.

I do not have any relatives that are attorney's who would run for D.A.

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#1491075 --- 10/24/16 09:14 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2613
Loc: Yates County
I would guess the Cayuga County Sheriff has someone who investigates welfare fraud. There usually are not a ton of these cases. Its a paper trail that usually makes the case. Not difficult to prosecute and plea bargin. It seems strange the D.A. will not pursue these cases. Maybe its his way of asking for more staff or ADA's.

In any event, refusing to prosecute cases because of his perceived staff problems is no excuse.

As far as Timbo's comment about spending more money prosecuting smaller crimes. The D.A.'s budget is set, it doesn't cost the county anything other than a good work ethic by the D.A.to move these cases forward.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1491084 --- 10/24/16 11:31 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
newsman38 Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 4727
Loc: Fourth Estate
Cayuga County Legislature refuses welfare-fraud prosecution grant funds

AUBURN Following a heated discussion, Cayuga County legislators voted 5-1 not to accept Crimes Against Revenue Program grant funds at the Ways and Means Committee meeting Wednesday night. Legislator Paul Pinckney voted for the resolution, and Legislator Patrick Mahunik was absent.

As a result, three people employed through the CARP grant will be let go including an assistant district attorney, a grant administrator and an investigator. The county had already served their termination letters, stipulating that it was subject to the vote, said County Administrator Suzanne Sinclair.

Sinclair and District Attorney Jon Budelmann have been at odds over the bottom line: whether the CARP grant costs the county money, or brings it in.

Budelmann said the CARP grant funds awarded for 2016 equaled approximately $107,000 a year for three years, totaling about $321,000. But he said the $107,000 would only carry the program until July. He planned to look for other grants and funding to sustain it the rest of the year.

Budelmann proposed accepting the grant, using the first year's allotment and revisiting whether the county wanted to continue its participation prior to July. But the committee voted not to accept the grant, leaving the county Legislature responsible for about $35,000 in salary and benefits for the three employees' work in 2016.

Working to trim an approximately $1.5 million deficit, Legislator Mark Farrell said the county relies on Social Services to turn those unqualified for public assistance away. While Budelmann argued that by prosecuting these kinds of crimes his office saves taxpayers millions of dollars, legislators argued that preventive methods also save taxpayers money.

As far as revenue is concerned, Sinclair and Budelmann have different calculation methods with opposite outcomes. Sinclair has the county coming short by $23,704.13 in 2015 and by a projected $74,000 in 2016. Budelmann has the county saving about $22,260 in 2015.

The discrepancies seem to be whether or not to include reimbursement funds from the Department of Social Services. But Sinclair argued that DSS does not reimburse the district attorney's office for those things covered by the CARP grant.

Budelmann, however, said his staff through the grant funds have assisted with DSS cases, which his office would not have had the manpower to take on. Therefore, he argued, that revenue should be included.

"These claims and the work underlying them are a direct result of the personnel funded with this grant and we would not have these prosecutions without the personnel generating them," he said in an email to legislators Wednesday afternoon.

One thing that is consistent monies brought in from restitution are divvied up with the state. While the DA's office brought in about $39,000 in restitution in 2015, the county received a little over $4,000.

Gwendolyn Craig | gwendolyn.craig@lee.net
GwenCraig2
Feb 17, 2016

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#1491087 --- 10/24/16 11:57 AM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Mean Gene]
Timbo Offline
Silver Member

Registered: 07/18/12
Posts: 12814
Loc: CNY
Originally Posted By: Mean Gene
I would guess the Cayuga County Sheriff has someone who investigates welfare fraud. There usually are not a ton of these cases. Its a paper trail that usually makes the case. Not difficult to prosecute and plea bargin. It seems strange the D.A. will not pursue these cases. Maybe its his way of asking for more staff or ADA's.

In any event, refusing to prosecute cases because of his perceived staff problems is no excuse.

As far as Timbo's comment about spending more money prosecuting smaller crimes. The D.A.'s budget is set, it doesn't cost the county anything other than a good work ethic by the D.A.to move these cases forward.

Yes, but I strongly suspect that the cost-to-benefit payout is poor at best when compared to other likely prosecutions. There are indeed other costs... the limited number of available work hours in a day to prosecute being perhaps most valuable.

I would submit that most DA's are already overworked in relation to their resources.
_________________________
Everyone's entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts.

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#1491107 --- 10/24/16 07:53 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Timbo]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2613
Loc: Yates County
There are good D.A.'s and poor ones, just like all professions. I have seen both at work. Now that I have seen the grant proposal I can see both sides of the argument. In the past, Yates county DSS has procured a grant that went towards a Sheriff's Investigator position to investigate potential welfare fraud cases.

Being familiar with these types of cases I can say there is usually a paper trail "gotcha" which causes defendants, arrested by police to jump at a plea bargin which includes restitution. There is not a ton of work involved from a prosecution standpoint. Offer a Misdemeanor plea, probation and restitution.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1491108 --- 10/24/16 08:21 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Mean Gene]
Timbo Offline
Silver Member

Registered: 07/18/12
Posts: 12814
Loc: CNY

What are the two sides of the argument, as you see them?

An abbreviated rundown of the grant proposal would also be helpful.

Thx.
_________________________
Everyone's entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts.

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#1491138 --- 10/25/16 02:16 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2613
Loc: Yates County
The D.A. obviously thinks its a great thing that he could have an additional ADA, an Investigator and a clerical position if they accepted the grant.

The down side is the county will have to pick up part of the cost as it does not cover all three for the whole year. Also it appears that if they accept the grant the state gets the lions share of restitution that is retrieved.

Its the Sheriff's department's job to investigate crimes. They should apply for a grant thru DSS to get money to investigate fraud if they think it is an issue that requires someone full time to investigate DSS cases. In the mean time I believe the D.A. will handle any DSS fraud arrest that comes across his desk. He would be very foolish to say he wouldn't prosecute them seeing how it is his job to do so.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1491148 --- 10/25/16 03:04 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Hot Burrito Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 04/17/00
Posts: 740
Loc: Tiajuna Flats
Is there any document showing the DA really said he wouldn't prosecute these cases without the grant? As I read the one article it sounds like he said the funding and staff cuts would impact his ability to do it, but that's not the same thing.

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#1491158 --- 10/25/16 06:11 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: newsman38]
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
Originally Posted By: newsman38


Working to trim an approximately $1.5 million deficit, Legislator Mark Farrell said the county relies on Social Services to turn those unqualified for public assistance away. While Budelmann argued that by prosecuting these kinds of crimes his office saves taxpayers millions of dollars, legislators argued that preventive methods also save taxpayers money.


So even Budelmann said that between prosecuting welfare fraud and the preventative methods done by Social Services will save the taxpayers millions but yet he won't prosecute welfare fraud. Sounds like he is having a hissy fit because he couldn't get his grant. To me it doesn't seem that this grant is fiscally conducive to the revenue it would bring in. The legislators had a hard choice to make but they made it based on fiscally sound principles in lean times.

All the county departments are doing more with less. I hear the sheriff's department is short handed as is Auburn PD. It's unfortunate but these are lean times.

The D.A. shouldn't be allowed to extort money from another county agency to do his job. Especially at a time when the county is looking to raise taxes and fees. To refuse to do the job he is paid to do until Social Services pays him is robbing Peter to pay Paul.

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#1491161 --- 10/25/16 06:15 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Auburnite13021]
Auburnite13021 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/16
Posts: 24
It's extortion and corruption. We saw some long time state politicians get convicted for their pay to play schemes.

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#1491162 --- 10/25/16 06:45 PM Re: D.A. won't prosecute welfare fraud [Re: Mean Gene]
Timbo Offline
Silver Member

Registered: 07/18/12
Posts: 12814
Loc: CNY
Originally Posted By: Mean Gene
The D.A. obviously thinks its a great thing that he could have an additional ADA, an Investigator and a clerical position if they accepted the grant.

The down side is the county will have to pick up part of the cost as it does not cover all three for the whole year. Also it appears that if they accept the grant the state gets the lions share of restitution that is retrieved.

Its the Sheriff's department's job to investigate crimes. They should apply for a grant thru DSS to get money to investigate fraud if they think it is an issue that requires someone full time to investigate DSS cases. In the mean time I believe the D.A. will handle any DSS fraud arrest that comes across his desk. He would be very foolish to say he wouldn't prosecute them seeing how it is his job to do so.

Then what is the duty of The NY State Human Resources Administration, Bureau of Fraud Investigation, if not to investigate and prosecute these cases, or are they merely the state investigative arm?
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