ALEXANDRIA, MN—Rep. Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, Chair of the House Subcommittee on Childcare Access and Affordability, issued the following statement in reaction to news reports about a raid conducted by the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS), the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the U.S. Secret Service on Baraka Child Care Center in Minneapolis as part of what is being described as a "massive" fraud investigation.
“After Democrats and other activists dismissed reports of daycare fraud, it’s encouraging that the Dayton administration seems to be taking this issue seriously. Every dollar in fraud is a dollar taken away from those who truly need this program. I hope the Dayton administration will keep the pedal down to root out as much fraud as possible and prosecute those responsible to the fullest extent of the law. Public program fraud is unacceptable and cannot be tolerated or swept under the rug.”
Rep. Franson has co-authored legislation that she intends to pursue next session to continue the fight against childcare fraud and to ensure that childcare assistance program dollars are only going to those who need it. The proposed legislation would allow DHS to immediately suspend licenses of providers who do not cooperate with investigators if they are subject to a fraud investigation in addition to other tools aimed at combating the widespread fraud within the childcare assistance program.