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State Auditor

November 6, 2012 | By Kim Geiger
WASHINGTON - Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill secured a second term in the Senate, defeating Republican challenger Todd Akin in a hard-fought contest that gained national attention over controversial remarks about rape and pregnancy. McCaskill had been a top GOP target since she was elected in 2006, when Democrats took control of the Senate. On Tuesday, the Associated Press and NBC projected McCaskill would win. In their quest to regain control of the chamber, Republicans considered Missouri one of their best opportunities to pick up a Democrat-held seat this year.
June 29, 2012 | By Sam Allen, Los Angeles Times
Throughout their 10-month investigation of the city of Vernon, state auditors were unable to speak with one of the people they believed knew the most about the city's financial woes: former administrator Eric T. Fresch. Fresch was widely viewed as the most powerful decision-maker in the city's government and made as much as $1.6 million. But he managed to avoid a subpoena issued as part of the state's investigation, state auditor Elaine Howle said. Attorneys for the auditor's office contacted him repeatedly, and a process server was hired to try to track him down at his home and offices.
March 30, 2012 | By Garrett Therolf, Los Angeles Times
A report released Thursday by the state auditor describes widespread deficiencies in Los Angeles County's oversight of abused and neglected children, finding that problems with the speed and quality of investigations remain despite years of promises by the Board of Supervisors. In July 2010 the department reported 9,300 child abuse investigations that were open longer than the state's 30-day deadline. Although the backlog has decreased substantially, in January it was still 3,200, more than twice as large as it was in July 2009, according to the audit.
January 25, 2012 | By Dan Weikel, Los Angeles Times
California's $98.5-billion bullet train project has become "increasingly risky" because of uncertainty about where the money will come from to finish even the first phase, the state auditor warned Tuesday. In the latest in a series of cautionary reports by outside agencies and groups, the report found that the California High-Speed Rail Authority has made some progress in addressing planning and fiscal concerns but still has important work to do to ensure that the project can be built as promised.
January 4, 2012 | By Ralph Vartabedian and Dan Weikel,Los Angeles Times
In a scathing critique that could further jeopardize political support for California's proposed $98.5-billion bullet train, a key independent review panel is recommending that state officials postpone borrowing billions of dollars to start building the first section of track this year. Gov. Jerry Brown has said he will ask the Legislature in the coming months to issue the first batch of $9 billion in voter-approved bonds for a high-speed rail network that backers say will create jobs, help the environment and transform the state's economy.
December 14, 2011 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
State health officials have failed to adequately or promptly review the finances of publicly funded managed-care plans responsible for serving millions of Medi-Cal recipients, according to a report released Tuesday by California's s tate auditor. The state departments of Managed Health Care and Health Care Services also didn't conduct timely medical checks, intended to ensure that Medi-Cal recipients receive high-quality care, according to the report by State Auditor Elaine M. Howle.
October 5, 2011 | By Patrick McGreevy and Anthony York, Los Angeles Times
Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday gave the state auditor broad new powers to investigate the misuse of taxpayer funds by cities and counties, signing legislation created in the wake of the financial scandal in the city of Bell. The governor also approved a bill allowing nonprofits to take over the operation of state parks that otherwise would be closed because of budget woes and a clutch of proposals intended to protect children. He vetoed a measure that would have allowed child-care workers to unionize.
September 23, 2011 | By Jessica Garrison and Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times
State auditors found Montebello improperly handled $31 million, including instances in which officials used funds meant to improve blighted neighborhoods on fancy dinners in Las Vegas, golf, embroidered polo shirts and other "frivolous" items. The two audits, released Thursday, mark more bad news for the city of 65,000 east of downtown Los Angeles. Montebello is seeking a private loan to avoid running out of cash this fall and is the subject of an FBI investigation into allegations that it misused federal housing money.
August 1, 2011 | By Garrett Therolf, Los Angeles Times
Despite a warning from California's state auditor that they were committing a crime, Los Angeles County supervisors defied a subpoena for records involving the deaths of children who had been under the supervision of the troubled Department of Children and Family Services. The inquiry was launched by the Legislature earlier this year after reports in The Times that more than 70 children had died since 2008 of abuse or neglect after coming to the attention of county social workers.
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