Minnesota Department of Human Services Inspector General Carolyn Ham was placed on “investigative leave” in March, but reporters learned Friday that the investigation into Ham’s conduct hasn’t even started yet.
She’s the only inspector general in Minnesota, and her office is housed under the Department of Human Services. As such, she’s responsible for investigating the DHS’s programs, like the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP). So when the Office of the Legislative Auditor confirmed in a March report that millions of dollars in government payments went to fraudulent child care centers, it didn’t take long for the DHS to place Ham on leave.
Her long-term status with the department won’t be determined until an investigation into her conduct is completed, but that investigation hasn’t started yet—nearly four full months after she was suspended.
“As to the reason for the long delay, you will have to ask DHS,” she added.
DHS officials, however, continue to refuse to comment on the status of the investigation, claiming it’s not public information.
House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt (R-Crown) and State Rep. Mary Franson (R-Alexandria) will hold a press conference Monday to discuss the ongoing issues at DHS.
“If what Ms. Ham says is true, and the investigation has not yet begun, we deserve answers from Gov. Tim Walz and Tony Lourey—immediately,” Franson said in a statement. “Minnesota taxpayers have paid $42,000 for her to remain on investigative leave for her role in allowing what the Legislative Auditor described as ‘pervasive’ fraud. She should have been removed months ago.”
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