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New Richmond DSS head asks auditor to investigate department

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RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - The new Interim Director of Richmond’s troubled Department of Social Services has asked Richmond City Auditor Umesh Dalal for a financial, efficiency, effectiveness, and compliance audit of three particular programs at the agency.

In a letter obtained by CBS 6, David Hicks asked Dalal to conduct an audit of the Administration and Finance, Economic Support and Independence, and the Comprehensive Services Act.

Specifically, Hicks asked Dalal to look into DSS’s finances, the efficiency and effectiveness of programs, and the agency’s compliance with federal, state and local laws and regulations.

Dalal said the audit request will have to be approved by the audit committee, as well as city council, before he can start his review.

So, what are some of the problems the audit might reveal?

CBS 6 Investigative Reporter Melissa Hipolit obtained copies of several monthly reports conducted by the former Interim Head of Social Services, Tonya Vincent, last year.

Those reports highlighted many of the problems the entire department is facing.

In a September 2013 report, Vincent cited numerous challenges that every department within DSS faced, including staffing issues.

Vincent cited a large number of vacant positions, and the impending retirement of 19 employees, as the reason why “program staff (across the board) continue to struggle to meet performance benchmarks.”

“We continue to lose staff in key areas that make it difficult to meet the demand for services and assistance,” Vincent wrote.

Vincent also cited a bad work environment at the department.

“We are continuing to hear issues regarding low morale and a negative work environment,” Vincent wrote.


  • Becky

    David Hicks’ Boss and Comrade, Mayor Dwight Jones oversees the Executive Management of the city’s departments and agencies.
    Byron Marshall is the highest paid government official in the City of Richmond. He reports directly to the Mayor, IS directly Responsible for the city’s day-to-day municipal operations of All city departments and
    Are they All, now, pretending, again, that they Don’t Have a Clue?
    It’s their JOBS that they ceremoniously Refuse to accept any and all accountability for their responsibilities.
    This is a long standing Scandal, problem, dysfunction and failure; like
    so many others.
    The Execs hand picked their “teams’ leaders”, and are certainly privy to their own in-house policies, staffing levels, and debacles.
    They apparently micro manage, manipulate, orchestrate, and set up
    their own set ups to the way they, themselves, elect to do their
    government business behind their closed doors and back rooms..
    Yet, The Executive Richmond Government Debacle, Inc. always SKATES and hides behind their scapegoats. The scapegoats get promotions, lucrative package deals, and passed on to the next state.
    Let them propagandize in their Media just How Good They ARE!
    while covering up all their Scandals, Debauchery and Failures..

  • manalishi

    Democrats will NEVER investigate their own corruption. They would have to fire 90% of current staff. Dulal may be a competent auditor but his hands are tied,,,you know why. On the other hand, Cheers to Mr. Hicks for bringing bringing integrity to a dept in Richmond. But i doubt that was ever the intentions of whomever appointed him. Keep up the good work.

    • Manalishi

      I’m not ignoring anything Lisa. Surely if i was wrong or inaccurate, you would have said so. Therefore, since you do not like anyone calling out your democrat soulmates, You must be fully complicit and supportive of the democrat run history of willful neglect/abuse of the children.

      So, tell us. How would you handle the majority employees that neglect these children yet still milk our tax $? You either accept this as a democrat and be part of the problem, or you don’t. Which is it?

  • NotPC

    “Ignorant” is the new click word directly associated with the Democratic
    favored voter block. Democratic handed-out “Talking Points”, without
    form or substance, is the Democratic Excuse Method to excuse,
    refuse, ignore, and Forward Democratic Scandals, Dysfunctions, and

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