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Man hired after allegedly misspending public funds

A Centerville man who resigned from Clinton County Children Services after paying back $713 for trips he was reimbursed for but never took is now working next door in Highland County.

This is another example uncovered by the Dayton Daily News of public employees being permitted to pay back misspent funds and resign quietly.

Larry McGuire was placed on administrative leave Feb. 6, 2012, after county officials determined he had requested mileage reimbursement for a meeting in Columbus that actually was handled as a conference call. An internal investigation found he had done this at least half a dozen times. He resigned Feb. 14 and cut a check to the county. A separation agreement between McGuire and the county was drafted but not signed by county officials.

Assistant Clinton County Prosecutor Andrew McCoy said his office was consulted in the case along with the sheriff’s office. They did not press charges.

“During that investigation Mr. McGuire at all times denied any inappropriate (actions) or wrongdoing,” McCoy said. “That’s a position he maintained while agreeing to make full payment for all disbursements.”

The Daily News left messages for McGuire at his home and work, as well as through his attorney, and received no call back.

He had worked for Clinton County for 16 years and left as an administrator making $27 an hour.

McGuire applied in April 2012 for the job at Highland County making $17.50 an hour.

Highland County officials say they had no knowledge of the accusations against McGuire, who now works there as a child protective services caseworker. Highland County is located southeast of Warren County.

“I was aware that he had left employment there but I was not aware of any particular details,” said Debbie Robbins, director of Highland County Job and Family Services. “We have, particularly for people in the child protective services arena, we do a background check for all those folks.

“We got that back and there was nothing.”

In another investigation last year, the Daily News found a Montgomery County Job and Family Services employee who left her job with a separation agreement after paying back more than $5,000 in travel reimbursements for miles she never drove.

Free phone program database coming

The agency that oversees the disbursement of free cell phones to low income households has begun work on a national database to make sure people are not collecting more than one phone line.

The Daily News first reported that the program — funded by fees on everyone’s cell phone bills — has grown to include more than 1 million Ohians and faces concerns of rampant fraud and abuse with households violating rules by getting multiple phones from different providers.

The Universal Services Administrative Company in 2012 issued an order to cut down on waste, fraud and abuse that they say cut more than $213 million from the program last year. Central to these reforms was the creation of this national database, which USAC estimates could be operational this year.

USAC refused to disclose to the Daily News how much they’re paying for the database. USAC is an independent non-profit.

Without such a database, people have been able to go to multiple providers and get a phone from each provider though program rules limit eligibility to one phone per household.

Growth in the program is fed by the 2008 decision to extend it to prepaid cellphone companies, which get up to $10 every month that someone is subscribed. The number of cellphone companies offering the service in Ohio grew from four in 2011 to nine last year, with seven more awaiting approval from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.

The cost of the program in Ohio was approaching $7 million a month last year.

Audit: Medicaid overbilled $713K

Ohio Auditor Dave Yost this month ordered repayment of $713,000 from a Franklin County-based medical provider accused of overbilling Ohio Medicaid.

The auditor’s office found Jama & Sulub Home Health Care LLC failed to document services, did not follow doctor-prescribed plans of care and used ineligible family members as health aides.

“Time sheets show services were delivered, and plans of care tell us what patients need,” Yost said. “When we can’t see those things, there are just too many missing pieces of the puzzle for us to know anyone is entitled to payment with public money.”

The audit examined 303 instances of home health services and found 123 of them to be in error, resulting in overpayment by Ohio Medicaid in the amount of $640,848 between Nov. 1, 2007 and June 30, 2011. With interest of $71,915, the total due is $712,763.

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