Officials from New York State’s Broome County unveiled a new initiative to crack down on workers’ compensation fraud.
Broome County Executive Debbie Preston said Wednesday her county has created an informal task force to oversee workers’ compensation claims and make sure they are legitimate from the very beginning through the end of the process.
The task force will consist of Preston; County District Attorney Gerald Mollen; County Personnel Director Tom Behan; and Tom Dellapenna and Colleen Capwell, both from the county’s risk and insurance department.
The task force will investigate current, as well as new, claims for worker’s compensation, making sure claims are legitimate.
“We work for the people,” says Preston. “Sometimes a few bad employees try to get something for nothing, scamming the people we serve. This task force will help prevent those instances.”
Officials said workers’ compensation claims cost the county more than $2 million annually and fraudulent claims have cost the county thousands of dollars more in the past.
“For those claims discovered to be fraudulent, our office will evaluate and prosecute to the fullest extent appropriate under law,” said County District Attorney Mollen.
“We never like to hear about people getting hurt on the job,” said Preston. “We want to help those people get what they deserve. But we also want to send a clear message to others that are trying to scam the system that it will not be tolerated.”
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