Fitzsimon: The follies

Another week, another set of problems identified at the state Department of Health and Human Services. This time it is a letter from the U.S. Department of Agriculture questioning DHHS oversight of the state’s food stamp program.

The Fitzsimon File by Chris Fitzsmon

The Fitzsimon File
by Chris Fitzsmon

The letter cited problems in the state’s employment and training program, lack of monitoring in the claim management process, problems with reporting and record keeping, and even potential fraud.
That is quite a tight ship that Sec. Aldona Wos is running over there. The next thing you know she will be signing multi-million dollar, no bid contracts, offering personal service contracts to executives with her husband’s company and having key personnel flee the department and not be able to replace them.

Oh wait.

The letter from the feds came the day after Wos appeared before a legislative panel and boasted about the progress the department was making in many areas, including the administration and oversight of the food stamp program.

The Winston-Salem Journal quoted Republican Rep. Donny Lambeth saying that the latter was “very disappointing” and that it was becoming difficult for lawmakers to accept the “verbal updates” from Wos.
Lambeth is the latest lawmaker to express concern about the way DHHS is being run. It is clearer every week that Wos has lost the confidence of many members of the General Assembly from both parties. One of the few people in Raleigh who continues to claim she is doing a good job is the person who appointed her, Governor Pat McCrory.

Civitas mad that education meeting being held in education building

The folks at the Pope Civitas Institute are up in arms that the first meeting of a commission created by the General Assembly to reconsider the controversial Common Core education standards will meet in the state education building.

Horror of horrors.

The legislation created the new commission under the Department of Administration, no doubt because of all the education experts that hang out there, and the offended Civitaser does acknowledge that the meeting is in the Construction Room in the education building, which is technically a Department of Administration room.

But that is not good enough. The meeting is still in the education building, where people are susceptible to those radical Common Core supporters like the N.C. Chamber and State Board of Education Chair Bill Cobey, a Republican former member of Congress.

Then there are the representatives from the United Nations likely roaming the halls trying to control the lives of North Carolina children waving their copies of Agenda 21 and trying to take everybody’s guns away.

Civitas and other folks on the right-wing fringe are also upset with the appointments to the commission that were made by leftists like Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, House Speaker Thom Tillis, and Governor Pat McCrory, all candidates supported by Civitas Action— the political arm of the Civitas Institute that is run by the same people who the main Pope Civitas propaganda outfit.

The maddening headline of the week

It is from WSOC-TV in Charlotte.

“Police: 11-year-old dead after shooting herself with mom’s gun.”

How many times do we have to see tragedies like this before we can have an honest debate about access to guns in our communities? Nobody is talking about the repealing the Second Amendment, but you would think that keeping guns away from kids is the least we could agree to do.

Chris Fitzsimon is the Founder and Director of NC Policy Watch — a progressive public policy think tank that is a special project of the N.C. Justice Center.

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