Lawmakers are examining how much money state agencies are spending on travel both in and out of the state.
The Mississippi Division of Medicaid spent approximately one million dollars on travel expenses last year. $400,000 of it came from the state.
“In our program integrity group, there’s meetings every year about how do you audit folks, how do you look for fraud waste and abuse. Those things are always changing. It’s a very large workforce, and we send them to learn the latest and best techniques.”
In all, state agencies spent close to $60 million on travel both in and out of the state. In a quest to cut down on spending, lawmakers met with leaders of some of the state’s largest agencies yesterday to discuss how those departments can cut down on unneeded travel.
“I think there are some conferences that make sense,” says Lieutenant Governor Tate Reeves. “Clearly, I think Dr. Dzielak ought to attend the national conferences for Medicaid Directors, but I don’t think many taxpayers in Mississippi think there are 80 different employees at the division that need ought to be traveling out of state. They ought to be in Mississippi working.”
Last year, the Division of Medicaid received roughly one-billion dollars from the state.