PROVIDENCE – The R.I. Department of Labor and Training has received $1.6 million from the U.S. Department of Labor to finance improvements to the state’s unemployment insurance system, the department announced Wednesday.
The awards include:
- $464,000 for better fraud identification tools and tracking, including technology that verifies Internet Protocol addresses
- $410,000 to update computer hardware and security software
- $389,000 to finance additional benefit-control personnel for a two-year period
“This award represents just one of a number of steps the department has taken under the Chafee administration to reduce benefits fraud,” said DLT Director Charles J. Fogarty in a release.
Fogarty added that this fall, the department began financing a position within the Attorney General’s Office devoted exclusively to prosecuting benefits fraud.
Last week, as part of the DLT’s month-long education effort in October to prevent and combat fraud, the department ran a free educational workshop entitled “Combating Unemployment Insurance Fraud,” which attracted 70 employers.
In addition to $1.6 million in U.S. Department of Labor funding, the DLT will receive $100,000 to promote greater employer registration in the UI State Information Data Exchange System, which allows employers to inform the DLT of employee separation in real time, minimizing the opportunities for benefit overpayments and claimant fraud, the DLT said.