Report I2009-0640 Recommendation 2 Responses

Report I2009-0640: California Department of Transportation: Caltrans Employees Engaged in Inexcusable Neglect of Duty, Received Overpayment for Overtime, Falsified Test Data, and Misappropriated State Property (Release Date: March 2013)

Case Number I2009-0640

Recommendation #2 To: Transportation, Department of

To address the false claims for overtime and differential work hours submitted by Technician B and approved by his supervisor, we recommend that Caltrans seek $6,954 in reimbursement from Technician B for the overtime and pay differential payments that he received improperly. (See I2009-0640 ,p. 23)

Agency Response From May 2013

Caltrans reported in February 2013 that it took an adverse action against Technician B and then reached a settlement with him that resolved all issues related to this case. As a result of the settlement, Caltrans claimed that it was precluded from taking further action against Technician B to collect reimbursement for the payments he improperly received. We disagreed with that conclusion, however, as the settlement made no reference to collecting the reimbursement.

Subsequently, Caltrans claimed that it was unable to recover reimbursement for the improper payments because the last of the payments was made in September 2008, which is beyond the three-year statute of limitations for bringing a legal action to recover the money. Although a three year statute of limitations generally applies in these situations, due to the fraudulent nature of Technician B's actions, we believe Caltrans could have alleged that the statute of limitations was tolled until the impropriety of the payments was discovered, which would have allowed it time to recover reimbursement in 2013.

However, now that three years has elapsed since the impropriety of the payments was discovered, we agree that no further action can be taken to implement this recommendation.

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Resolved

All Recommendations in I2009-0640