State Shifts Child Support Enforcement Responsibilities
On July 1, 2010, the State will eliminate funding for 16 state-operated child support enforcement offices, which provide services to 28 counties. Through its 2009 Appropriations Act, the General Assembly directed each Child Support Enforcement (CSE) office being administered by the State (NC Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Social Services) to be administered by the local county authority. CSE is responsible for ensuring children receive financial support ordered by the courts.
Currently, the CSE program is funded by both state and federal dollars. The federal government bears the majority of CSE expenditures and provides incentive payments to the states for meeting CSE goals. By shifting CSE operating cost to counties, the State estimates annual savings of approximately $4 million. Currently, all costs associated with operating CSE programs are reimbursable at 66%. County-administered CSE programs contribute 34% of the remaining costs. We are still trying to determine what additional cost this will place on Mecklenburg County.
By January 1, 2010, NC counties must submit to the State a plan for administering CSE within the county or as part of a region. CSE administration options include having CSE services provided by the County’s Department of Social Services or some other County department; outsourcing services to a private provider under contract to the County; or partnering with other counties to administer the services regionally.
DSS has convened a CSE Transition Team, including staff from County Finance, Attorney’s Office, HR and IST, to analyze the fiscal and operational impact of each option. The Transition Team will provide recommendations for consideration by the DSS Director and County Executive Team. Final recommendations, including a funding plan, will be provided to the Board.
For more information, please contact DSS Director Mary Wilson at 704-336-6279 or email
Mecklenburg Awarded Accreditation for Park and Recreation
Last week, the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) awarded accreditation to Mecklenburg County’s Park and Recreation Department. Sponsored by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), Mecklenburg County’s Park and Recreation Department is one of only 88 recreation agencies recognized in the country. Accreditation recognizes an exemplary level of commitment to quality and constant improvement in providing parks and recreation services.
The accreditation caps a one-year process in which all aspects of Mecklenburg’s Park and Recreation operations, programs, facilities, administration, and procedures were examined by professionals in the field and rated against 140 national standards. Last March, a team of these professionals visited Mecklenburg County to conduct on-site inspections and personal examinations.
For more information, please contact Park and Recreation Director Jim Garges at 704-336-5470
Employee Report Line Launching
On November 6, 2009, the County will begin offering employees another way to report concerns about fraud or other unethical or illegal behavior within the organization. Under the direction of the County’s Internal Audit Department, Mecklenburg County has contracted with The Network to offer employees an anonymous Report Line. The Report Line is a toll-free telephone and web-based reporting service that will be available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The Network, Inc. is an independent company providing reporting services worldwide.
Through the Report Line services, The Network will receive, collect and document any reported concerns, and relay that information to the County’s Internal Audit Department for appropriate follow-up and investigation. Both the telephone and online reporting options allow easy accessibility, while offering the employee the option of remaining anonymous. Employees also will continue to be encouraged to raise concerns with their supervisor or manager or through other administrative channels.
The Internal Audit Department is collaborating with the County’s PSI Department in managing a multi-faceted communications campaign to inform employees, supervisors and managers about the Report Line, and remind all employees about the County’s values, guiding principles and expectations regarding ethical behavior. The roll-out of the Report Line was rescheduled from its tentative September 30 start to November 6 to ensure these important communications steps were in place.
For additional information, please contact Internal Audit Director Cornita Spears at 704-336-2575
- Harry L. Jones, Sr., County Manager
There will be no Budget/Public Policy Meeting on Tuesday, October 27.
The next Budget/Public Policy meeting is scheduled for November 10. Details are forthcoming.