Sunday, July 30, 2017

Improper Payments and Election Fraud

GovExec has a piece on a proposed commission to look at steps to reduce improper payments.  It's good, but I'd like to make a connection to another issue: election fraud.

The piece includes this sentence: "The example he recommended is easing the current restriction in the Social Security Act that prevents the Treasury Department’s Fiscal Bureau from readily accessing the Death Master File for privacy reasons."  It goes on to note that IRS uses its databases to vet 87 percent of all federal payments.

A major problem in improper payments is knowing when your intended payee is dead. Perhaps the payment should go to the estate  (usual in the case of farm programs) or should not be paid at all.

A major problem in keeping voter eligibility files current is knowing when the previously registered voter has died.

By improving the IRS process by allowing access to the Death Master File (as opposed, IIRC, to using less accurate data from SSA) and using that process for both payments and voter eligibility we kill two birds with one stone.

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