• WWLP 22 News: Tax reform on the way in Massachusetts

    April 23, 2012 - The following content was originally published by Channel 22 News, WWLP Springfield

    The House of Representatives’ lead revenue chief says comprehensive tax reform is coming, and it begins by reevaluating how the Commonwealth doles out about $26 billion in annual tax breaks to businesses to stimulate economic growth, without really knowing whether they work or not.

    The Tax Expenditure Commission has unanimously approved a final report listing several recommendations to bring more transparency and accountability to the tax code. Among them

    • Requiring the Legislature and Governor to clearly outline the public policy purpose behind tax breaks
    • Having the Department of Revenue collect data to analyze whether those tax breaks are achieving their purpose
    • Adding sunset clauses or “clawback” provisions that allow the state to end or recoup tax benefits from companies that do not meet obligations.

    Click here to see video coverage from Channel 22 News, WWLP Springfield

    Related News

    04/23/12 - State House News Service
    04/23/12 - Associated Press

  • State House News Service: 53 targeted in in alleged food stamp fraud

    April 20, 2012 - The following content was originally created by the State House News Service and published by the Salem Times

    Fifty-three people were targeted as part of widespread investigation involving city, state and federal law enforcement agencies that resulted in the raid of a Quincy convenience store and several downtown Boston businesses, officials said.

    "We know that there has been food stamp fraud and an uptick in food stamp fraud. It's a trend that's literally sweeping the nation," Bump told reporters, adding, "This is a complete tragedy and works to the detriment of all that are deserving, some now more than ever."

    Read more from the State House News Service

    Related News

    04/20/12 - Boston Herald
    04/20/12 - Boston Globe
    04/19/12 - WCVB Channel 5
    04/19/12 - WBZ Radio
    04/23/12 - Worcester Telegram and Gazette

  • MetroWest Daily News: State auditor attends Marlborough’s annual senior conference

    April 20, 2012The following content was originally published by the MetroWest Daily News

    Just a few miles from the headquarters of Evergreen Solar, which declared bankruptcy after accepting tens of millions of dollars in tax breaks and subsidies, state Auditor Suzanne Bump said yesterday that a commission will release recommendations next week to bring more accountability to tax-break programs.

    Speaking at the 32nd annual senior conference at Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School, Bump said the review of tax incentives is one way her office aims to protect taxpayer dollars.

    During the conference, hosted by state Sen. Jamie Eldridge, D-Acton, Bump said her office had reviewed about $2 billion worth of existing tax incentives. About half of those, she said, lacked certain identified attributes such as proper transparency or accountability.

    Many of them, she said, lacked an explicit purpose and several were without “clawback” provisions, or stipulations allowing the state to recoup cash if a business or entity reneges on their end of the tax break or credit agreement.

    Read more from the MetroWest Daily News

  • Boston Herald: Suzanne Bump sends a message to nonprofits

    April 19, 2012 - The following content was originally published by the Boston Herald.

    State Auditor Suzanne Bump unleashed a warning broadside at nonprofits that abuse taxpayer funds, after the state yanked $1.7 million in taxpayer funded disabled-services contracts from an embattled Charlestown agency where auditors say executives ran up bills at restaurants, liquor stores and Disney World.

    We will make an example of people who are not playing by the rules, said Bump, who plans to audit a slew of both nonprofit and for-profit state vendors this year. You follow the rules, youll have no problem with me. But if you break the rules, there are consequences.

    Read more from the Boston Herald

    Related News

    04/18/12 - Charlestown Patch
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  • Announcement: Selection Process Begins for New Inspector General

    April 12, 2012

    Governor Deval Patrick, Attorney General Martha Coakley and Auditor Suzanne Bump today announced the process they will follow to select a successor to Inspector General Gregory Sullivan, whose term expires on August 2, 2012. The Governor, Attorney General and Auditor are statutorily charged with selecting, by majority vote, an Inspector General for a term of five years. The need to select a new Inspector General arises because Mr. Sullivan is concluding his second five year term, the maximum term allowed under the General Laws.

    The Office of the Inspector General was established in 1980 in order to promote and uphold a standard of integrity for the Commonwealth. The mission of the Office is to prevent and detect fraud, waste and abuse in the expenditure of public funds. The Office conducts investigations and management reviews, analyzes legislation and regulations, and provides technical assistance to governmental entities. The Office has a Fiscal Year 2012 spending level of $2.8 million and approximately 40 employees.

    Candidates for Inspector General must possess unquestionable integrity and demonstrated ability in one or more of the following areas – accounting, auditing, financial analysis, law, management analysis, public administration, investigation and criminal justice administration.

    Classified advertisements will be placed in the Commonwealth’s major daily newspapers and posted with national organizations to help identify qualified candidates. Interested applicants must submit a resume and application postmarked no later than May 11, 2012 to each appointing authority.

    Inquiries should be directed to Edward Bedrosian, First Assistant Attorney General (617) 727-2200.

    Inspector General Application  pdf format of Inspector General Application
    Inspector General Announcement  pdf format of Inspector General Announcement

  • 22 News Springfield: Homeless kids bussed to school unfunded

    April 3, 2012 - The following content was originally published by 22 News, WWLP Springfield

    Homeless advocates say over 3,600 families are living in shelters and motels across Massachusetts. Many families have to relocate to different cities to receive this assistance. In response, and in compliance with a federal law called the McKinney-Vento Act, cities and towns have been funding the transportation costs to bus children to their old neighborhoods. Mass Coalition for the Homeless spokesperson Kelly Turley explained that they do this so that children are not uprooted into new school districts.

    “Because once that happens we can see that children lose sometimes two or three months educationally and are set back, so it’s really important to have that continuity of education,” said Turley.

    A report conducted by the state Auditor’s office found that over 200 cities and towns are funding school transportation for homeless kids, creating an unfunded mandate that is costing municipalities $11.3 million.

    “Cities and towns are being asked to pay children who no longer live in their community,” said Office of State Auditor Division of Local Mandates Director Vincent McCarthy. “Never prior to 1980, has there been such a burden imposed.”

    Click here to see video coverage from 22 News, WWLP Springfield

    Related News

    04/02/12 - MetroWest Daily News

  • Patriot Ledger: State audit finds continued problems for Weymouth Housing Authority

    April 2, 2012 - This following content was originally published by the Quincy Patriot Ledger

    Employees of the Weymouth Housing Authority spent significant time working for a non-profit affordable housing organization while being paid by the authority over 17-month period, a state audit has found.

    Housing authority employees’ working for South Suburban Affordable Housing in 2009 and 2010 while on the clock, and the non-profit’s use of authority resources without an agreement to pay for them were among several instances of poor financial management found in the audit released by State Auditor Suzanne Bump’s office Thursday.

    Read more from the Quincy Patriot Ledger.