California lawmakers to conduct emergency audit of EDD

Complaints have poured in from desperate Californians not receiving their unemployment benefits, or having their bank accounts drained.
The California Legislature has approved an emergency audit of the Employment Development Department (EDD) amid concerns over its backlog of unemployment claims and reports of fraud and abuse.

RELATED: Thousands demanding answers for issues while trying to access unemployment benefits

On Wednesday, 40 state legislators requested the emergency audit, calling for the employment agency to disclose exactly how big the backlog and fraud problems are.

Among the lawmakers calling for the audit, Assm. Jim Patterson (R-Fresno) has been perhaps the most vocal, saying on Wednesday that the EDD has failed to "provide basic customer care to millions of desperate jobless workers."

The announcement of the audit came days after the State Auditor designated the state's management of COVID-19 funds, including unemployment benefits, a high-risk issue.

RELATED: Valley residents receiving debit cards, letters with wrong name as EDD investigates payment fraud
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Over 9 million people in California have filed unemployment claims during the pandemic. Many have complained about how long it has taken the EDD to process their claim.

In the past six months, COVID-19 forced businesses to shut down or furlough employees, leaving millions out of jobs. Since then complaints have poured in from desperate Californians not receiving their unemployment benefits, or unable to register to receive benefits.

RELATED: No help? Dozens hit brick walls on path to California unemployment assistance

Others have shared stories of their bank accounts being drained or receiving letters and debit cards addressed to someone else.
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