Claremore Daily Progress

Top Stories

April 17, 2013

Veterans Affairs audit reveals problems

OKLAHOMA CITY —

State Auditor Gary Jones released Wednesday the performance audit report of the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs.
The audit was requested by Governor Mary Fallin in August 2012, following the resignation of former ODVA Executive Director Martha Spears.
The request also came in the wake of the scalding death of a veteran at a Claremore residential care facility and numerous other allegations of patient abuse, neglect and poor quality of care.
“The ODVA exists to serve one of the most revered populations within our state,” said State Auditor Gary Jones. “The five-month review of ODVA identified a high quality of care in selected parts of ODVA’s operations, but many of its practices fall short of the standard of quality expected by its constituents and their families.”
The report identifies inconsistent training, pervasive substandard wages, and disregard by some administrator’s of staff input. These practices have contributed to a problematic work environment where human resources are improperly allocated and undervalued. 
“We found inconsistent policy implementation and insufficient independence in performing internal investigations of alleged misconduct,” Jones said. “The result of the ODVA’s fractured decentralized management structure had the opposite effect of its desired intent to promote accountability.  We believe these issues could have been effectively managed or avoided altogether with appropriate oversight by the War Veterans Commission. Unfortunately, the ODVA’s governing board did not appear fully aware of its own governance responsibilities or conscious of its own deficiencies.”
Looking forward, the report notes that the current Commission appears to have taken some action toward improving its quality of care for veterans, including the recent appointment of a full-time deputy director to oversee daily operations. 
“Our report offers multiple recommendations detailing how the Commission may overcome its institutional challenges to implement consistency and accountability,” Jones said. “These recommendations are intended as a starting point to reform current practices and shift the agency’s current culture of apathy and disengagement. It won’t happen overnight, but it is possible for ODVA to change its current environment and achieve its mission of providing excellent health services to our veterans today and in the years to come. When it comes to the care of our veterans, doing anything less is not justifiable.”
The full performance audit report of ODVA is available online at www.sai.ok.gov.
 

1
Text Only
Top Stories
  • City open records dispute continues

    The city of Claremore will pay $41,324.25 in attorney fees to the Vinita law firm who challenged their compliance with the Oklahoma Open Records Act.

     

    July 29, 2014

  • Claremore sisters featured on talk show

    During their recent trip to Los Angeles, Claremore sisters Lindsey and Whitney Martin made the most of their time in the city of angels, spending time with family, visiting several beaches, restaurants and Hollywood attractions.

    July 29, 2014 1 Link

  • Elementary students learn to bid at Zebra Stripes auction

    Claremore elementary students in the Zebra Stripes summer care program participated in a student-friendly auction Friday at Roosa Elementary. The auction was presented by Daneen Shepherd, realtor/broker and auctioneer of Tulsa, who taught the children how to bid on items efficiently and effectively.

    July 29, 2014 1 Link

  • Treasurer issues tax warrants

    For the first time, tax warrants are being issued in Rogers County to collect unpaid personal property taxes.
    This week, some local business owners should expect to be served by the Rogers County Sheriff’s office.
    Personal tax warrants have been issued to three local companies, who owe a total of approximately $38,000 in past due taxes.

    July 29, 2014

  • No evidence or human remains found

    Rogers County Sheriff’s deputies and assisting agencies vacated a Tiawah property Friday, after no evidence or human remains were found in connection to the disappearance of a local resident that went missing in 1996.

    July 27, 2014

  • RCLC launches letter campaign

    The Rogers County Literacy Council, RCLC, is launching their annual letter writing campaign.
     A United Way Organization, the council is asking for community support to help promote literacy in the English language.

    July 27, 2014

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Inequality crisis shot with factual problems, hypocrisy

    President Obama, various media and political liberals say inequality, of all things, is the defining issue of our times. Yet this message is delivered by multimillionaires and a president who jets from tee time to stump speech on the taxpayer's dime.
     

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Obama wants limits on US company mergers abroad

    Staking out a populist stand ahead of the midterm elections, President Barack Obama on Thursday demanded “economic patriotism” from U.S. corporations that use legal means to avoid U.S. taxes through overseas mergers.

    July 25, 2014

  • Local churches impact poverty

    Claremore First Christian Church, First United Methodist and the Pastoral Alliance are combining efforts to host a 16-week program, “Getting Ahead in a Just Getting by World,” based off of the national program — “bridges out of poverty.”

    July 25, 2014

  • Grand Jury recesses until August

    The multicounty grand jury charged with investigating accusations of misconduct by Rogers County officials recessed Thursday until August 19-21, saying it needed to hear from more witnesses before returning a finding in the matter.

    July 25, 2014