Joined: Jun 2002
Friday January 23, 2009 6:36 PM
I agree with Stew in regards to CCing the AA and DA, as well as the Audit Unit. If the AA has any sense, he will seek a LC 5814 penalty.
In regards to the Audit Unit, today, I see them as a toothless tiger. About a year ago, just after the last manager retired, Bob Walensa, I dropped in to visit with their office in SAC and had a chat. I will not reveal with whom I chatted, but from what I heard, nothing is really being done. The news story about UR and audits, here on WCC earlier this week, supports my theory that in reality, nothing is being done.
While there, I asked one of the Audit Unit employees about how they were doing on audits, in particular, for the close to 100 specific UR complaints submitted by me, with all the attached documentation necessary to prove-up my assertions. The person I spoke with told me that "We have been doing random audits and have found widespread compliance."
I responded by asking, once again, whether they had looked at the specific files for which I had submitted a complaint. Again, I was told: "We have been doing random audits and have found widespread compliance."
I scratched my head, then asked that person at the Audit Unit to answer my question. That person again gave me the canned response: "We have been doing random audits and have found widespread compliance."
(During this visit, another Audit Unit employee informed me that the Audit Unit had, in essence, been defunded, and that they had to hire temps to conduct "random audits" --- so I am not surprised at the the WCC news story. Considering our current 'budget crisis,' I do not see any targeted audits in the near future.)
As much as I dislike seeing this type of inaction, I believe that we will not see a zealous Audit Unit like we had when Casey Young was our AD, and Mark Johnson was the Manager of the Audit Unit --- until this governator is gone with the wind in 2011 --- and then, only if we get a progressive governor.
As a sidenote, I am tempted to download all the LC 5814 penalty convictions, outlined in the WCAB panel decisions here on WCC, for the purpose of seeing if any IC or TPA has sustained at least 2 different LC 5814 penalty convictions --- the minimum number necessary to qualify for a LC 5814.6 conviction.
It might be interesting to publish an "open letter" to the DWC with evidence that some entity, such as SCIF in SAC, has sustained 2, 3, or 4, LC 5814 penalties that were upheld on appeal, and publicly ask if there will be any action taken.
Hmmmm. If only I had more hours in the day. If somebody else wants to do this, consider that you can get full access to all WCAB panel decisions, since July of 2007, for one month at a cost of $35.00. (I'm sure that David will correct me if I am wrong about the pricing.)