NYS Comptroller opens audit into state unemployment system

Around New York State

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — The New York State unemployment system is being audited by the state comptroller’s office, a representative confirmed to News 4 Friday.

State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli’s office tells us the audit began based on their assessment of “risk which includes complaints, large increases in payments, new programs and criteria, and changes to the IT.” They also note the comptroller has looked into the system in the past. 

The New York State Department of Labor tells News 4 they don’t comment on pending audits. However, they do say it’s not unusual for the comptroller’s office to regularly audit state agencies, the DOL release this statement:

“The New York State Department of Labor does not comment on pending audits. However, it is important to note that The Comptroller’s State Audit team performs financial and performance audits of New York State agencies on a routine basis –  so in light of the fact that the New York State Department of Labor has paid out over $81 billion in benefits to more than 4.6 million New Yorkers, an audit is not an unusual practice, and in fact, expected.”

Republican NYS Senator Ed Rath released a statement Friday saying he’s happy DiNapoli’s office will look into the claim but believes more should be done.

“I am happy that Comptroller DiNapoli will be auditing the New York State Unemployment system for fraud. While this is a critical first step, I believe that a full and comprehensive audit of the system needs to be done. From the very start of the pandemic the unemployment system in our State has been an absolute mess and the lack of transparency has been very concerning,” said Senator Rath.

“Between residents being unable to receive the benefits they are due, to long wait times to overpayments and blatant fraud, there has been non-stop issues. My office has heard from hundreds of residents regarding their unemployment problems, and I am proud to say we have been able to work to resolve many of their issues. Unfortunately, until the fundamental challenges with the unemployment system are addressed, these problems will continue to occur, and we will continue to see fraud and waste in the system. I am hopeful that this audit will bring some much-needed transparency to the process.”

Patrick Ryan is a digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2020. See more of his work here.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories