After more than $810 million taxpayer dollars were stolen last year, a bill to implement standard fraud-prevention practices at California’s Employment Development Department (EDD) passed out of the Senate Public Safety Committee. Authored by Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris, AB 110 will require the Employment Development Department (EDD) to cross-check incarceration records with unemployment claims in order to prevent paying fraudulent benefits and wasting taxpayer dollars.
“We have a duty to our taxpayers to ensure that their money is being used responsibly,” said Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach). “Due to a loophole in the current system, hundreds of millions of dollars were lost. AB 110 will close a critical gap so that unemployment funds go to those who desperately need them, not to fraudsters trying to make an extra buck.”
Common practice in other states is to cross-check lists of unemployment benefit claimants against incarceration data. California law, however, restricts sharing this data with other agencies. AB 110 enables EDD to easily cross-check claimants’ information, including social security numbers, against the relevant information in the database of inmate information maintained by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and by the counties.
AB 110 is supported by CalChamber, California State Sheriffs’ Association, Orange County Business Council, Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Peace Officers Research Association of California and Southwest California Legislative Council.