Audit Exposes Problems At The Department Of Intellectual And Developmental Disabilities

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities must remedy serious problems in its service recipient safety practices, service delivery system, and information system implementation efforts, according to a report released Tuesday by the Comptroller’s office.

The department provides services directly to recipients or indirectly through contracts with community providers in a variety of settings, ranging from institutional care to individual supported living in the community.  DIDD was serving 8,096 individuals as of May 31 of this year.

Among other findings, state auditors reported that:

· DIDD’s former deputy commissioner of the Office of Policy and Innovation improperly assumed authority to overturn two substantiated allegations of misconduct against provider employees and therefore did not intend to hold the provider accountable for service recipient deaths;

· The department did not establish appropriate safeguards to govern the background checks of DIDD employees, volunteers, or provider employees. That deficiency resulted in employees beginning work before background checks were completed, volunteers who had no background checks performed, and provider employees with disqualifying drug convictions that went undetected;

· DIDD was not providing adequate services for individuals with developmental disabilities in violation of statutory requirements and its own mission statement;

· Until top state officials find a sufficient funding solution, the high number of individuals with intellectual disabilities on the waiting list for Medicaid services will continue to plague the department; and

· Since 1994, DIDD has spent at least $4.3 million to replace its outdated information system with little to show for the expense. DIDD has estimated that it will spend another $11.8 million to complete the project.

“DIDD serves some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Comptroller Justin P. Wilson.  “Therefore, the department must do its utmost to ensure the safety of each individual served and to enhance the quality of life of all Tennesseans with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”

Auditors will present their findings at a meeting of the General Assembly’s Government Operations Joint Subcommittee on Education, Health and General Welfare on Oct. 23.  The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in Hearing Room 16 at Legislative Plaza in downtown Nashville. 

To view the DIDD report online, go to: http://www.comptroller.tn.gov/repository/SA/pa13043.pdf


New Hamilton County Businesses

Here are the new business licenses from the County Clerk's office: 3 I'S PERSONAL CARE SERVICES 4447 JAMES DRIVE CHATTANOOGA, TN 37416 ALL AMERICAN SUBCONTRACTOR LLC VARIOUS LOCATIONS CHATTANOOGA, TN 37402 ALL AMERICAN TREE SERVICE 5245 DONLYN LANE HIXSON, TN 37343 ARC FITNESS STUDIO 4716 MURRAY HILLS DR CHATTANOOGA, TN 37416 ARCHITECTURAL ... (click for more)

Gas Prices Drop .5 Cents In Chattanooga

Average retail gasoline prices in Chattanooga have fallen 0.5 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $2.04 per gallon on Sunday, according to GasBuddy's daily survey of 170 gas outlets in Chattanooga. This compares with the national average that has increased 0.4 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.43 per gallon, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com. ... (click for more)

Cleveland, Tn., Production Company Owner Charged With Defrauding Church Of God International Of $100,000

The head of a Cleveland, Tn., production company has been charged with defrauding the Cleveland-based Church of God International of $100,000 in connection with his part in setting up the church's world convention in Orlando, Fla., in 2010. Troy Scot Carter was charged by federal authorities with securities fraud. A four-page criminal information says the church hired Carter ... (click for more)

City Set To Commission $200,000 Mural On MLK Boulevard By Famed Muralist Meg Saligman; Foundations To Cover Cost

The city is set to commission a $200,000 mural on the side of the AT&T Building on MLK Boulevard by famed muralist Meg Saligman. Ms. Saligman has created over 50 murals all over the world, including one called  "Fertile Ground" that is 32,500 square feet in Omaha, Neb. Her most famous mural is "Common Threads" on the west wall of the Stevens Administrative Center ... (click for more)

Finley Stadium Needs To Grow Up - And Response

RE:  Finley Stadium Financial Picture Rosy; Beer And Alcohol Sales Approved; AstroTurf Almost Ready and City, County Pitching In $250,000 Each For New Finley Stadium AstroTurf I read a story here five days ago about a rosy future for Finley stadium. It lead me to believe that the stadium was making money and even improvements with donations.  Then we get a short ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The 15-Year-Old Marine

There are 58,267 names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall that today sits majestically in the Constitution Gardens of our nation's capital. It has never been lost on me that 33,103 of those who are named were only 18 years old when they died. But what caught my eye during my morning reading is that one of the names carved in the black granite “Dan Bullock“ was only 15 years old ... (click for more)