STATE OF TENNESSEE

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 PHIL BREDESEN                             6th FLOOR, ANDREW JOHNSON TOWER              TIMOTHY K. WEBB, Ed.D.

    GOVERNOR                                    710 JAMES ROBERTSON PARKWAY                           COMMISSIONER

      NASHVILLE, TN 37243-0375

 

 

MEMORANDUM

 

TO:                        Directors of Schools

 

FROM:                  Robert Greene, Deputy Commissioner

 

DATE:                   November 10, 2009

                               

RE:                         ARRA Fraud Reporting Requirement

 

This is to update you on an important issue related to American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds.  Office of Management and Budget Memorandum M-09-15, titled “Updated Implementing Guidance for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009” states:

 

“… recipients of awarded funds made available under the Recovery Act shall promptly refer to an appropriate inspector general any credible evidence that a principal, employee, agent, contractor, sub-grantee, subcontractor, or other person has submitted a false claim under the False Claims Act or has committed a criminal or civil violation of laws pertaining to fraud, conflict of interest, bribery, gratuity, or similar misconduct involving those funds.”

 

Please ensure staff in your LEA is made aware of this requirement.  If it becomes necessary to notify the OIG, for ARRA funds awarded by the U.S. Department of Education (Title I, Title II-D, and Title X of the No Child Left Behind Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and State Fiscal Stabilization Funds), the U.S. Department of Education Office of Inspector General should be notified.  To notify the USDOE OIG, an E-mail can be sent to oig.hotline@ed.gov; the OIG Hotline’s toll-free number can be called: 1-800-MIS-USED; or a complaint form (available at https://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/CFAPPS/OIG/englishhotlineform.cfm) can be submitted via the Internet or mailed to:

 

                                Inspector General’s Hotline

Office of Inspector General
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-1500

 

For programs funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (cafeteria equipment grants), the information can be entered at the following web site:  http://www.usda.gov/oig/contractorform.htm

 

Below are some important concepts for staff to know:

 

·       A false claim is knowingly presenting a claim for payment that is not true or accurate.

 

·       A false claim also involves knowingly making or using false records or statements to obtain payment by the government.

 

·       The most common cases of false claims involve situations when vendors or contractors overcharge for goods or services.

 

·       A conflict of interest occurs when an individual or organization has an interest that might compromise his/her/its reliability.