Governor Heineman isn’t pleased with how state Auditor Mike Foley handled release of an audit critical of the Department of Health and Human Services. Heineman tells reporters he received a copy of the audit, after they did.
“I believe Mr. Foley gave you a copy before he gave us one,” Heineman replies to a reporter’s question about the audit.
Heineman declines to comment on the findings of the audit.
“I’d like to read in detail before I comment on the details of what was in there,” Heineman says.
Heineman explains that he was busy with the state’s second reverse trade mission and hadn’t had time to read the audit. The governor and the Department of Economic Development played host to 117 business executives from 15 countries last week. Three companies announced investment in Nebraska. A fourth signed a memo of understanding that it would locate in Nebraska.
Auditor Foley outlined the findings of the audit to a legislative committee Wednesday. The audit discloses the cost of child welfare services grew by 27% since 2009. Foley harshly criticized the Department of Health and Human Services for its lack of documentation and failure to seek public bids for service contracts.
“Well, it’s interesting, if the auditor wants to help us, and it seems to me that ought to be the role of the auditor a little bit, maybe he ought to talk to us about that,” according to Heineman.
Foley, though, told the Omaha World-Herald he provided a draft of the audit to HHS six weeks prior to its release which HHS chief executive officer Kerry Winterer confirmed to the paper. Winterer explained he didn’t have substantive conversations with Heineman about the findings, because it was a draft.