The Governor has spent a long time attacking in-home support services. He claims they are simply riddled with fraud, and that he should, nay, must, spend $26 million to root out that fraud:
I promised to fight fraud and abuse in California’s In-Home Supportive Services, which assists some of California’s most vulnerable citizens. Today, I am proud to announce $26.5 million in awards that will help root out fraud in this program. Any fraud in our system is too much and, now more than ever, every dollar must count. We estimate a significant return on our investment in this budget year alone and that is very good news not only for taxpayers but especially for the Californians that rely on the resources provided by this important program.
Sure, fraud bad, savings good. In a perfect world, we would be able to root all fraud, and perfectly target the state’s money. Yet, for some reason, the governor picks and chooses which fraud he goes after. Fraud at $8/hour? Yeah, that must be dealt with. Fraud by the millions? Not so much.
Of course, here I’m referring to some of the many “penny wise, dollar foolish” tactics the governor has taken. For some reason it is a priority to spend money on this fraud, yet not at the Board of Equalization to pursue wealthy tax cheats. In Senate Committee hearings over the summer, Sen. Ducheny eviscerated the Governor’s staff for furloughing tax collectors who would, on the net, make the state money by staying on the job.
How is this any different? Sure, you have to pay out money to catch IHSS cheats, but you also have to pay out money to catch tax cheats. I guess it’s not as palatable to the Governator, and his rich donors, to go after their friends. They prefer to require cumbersome regulations for needy Californians to get even the most basic of services from the state, while allowing others to completely shirk their responsibilities.
It’s hard to describe dichotomy between the furloughs of tax collectors and this IHSS push as anything but class warfare. And, in at least one respect, it’s hard to tell that Arnold has changed at all from his Conan the Barbarian days. He’s darn good at the warfare.