In today’s papers

The Ohio Bureau of Workers? Compensation is investigating a potential new scandal within the beleaguered agency: whether political influence played a role when premium rates for certain employers were lowered without proper justification.

A draft internal audit released yesterday shows that, in 75 percent of the 153 largest reductions, agency rules weren?t followed or there was no record authorizing or explaining the changes to determine whether they were legitimate.

When bureau workers who processed the changes asked for justification for transactions, “they were instructed that such documentation was not required,” according to the audit.

AG candidate Marc Dann weighs in:

Although the draft audit addresses what controls the bureau did or did not have in place for the overrides, the investigation is not expected to be completed until well after Tuesday?s election, Smeltzer said.

State Sen. Marc Dann, a frequent bureau critic and Democratic candidate for attorney general, said that?s not good enough. He?s asking the U.S. Department of Justice?s Division of Public Integrity to investigate.

“In this case, some employers were apparently granted premium cuts just because they asked for them, and someone at the bureau had the power to give them whether they were warranted or not,” Dann said in a release.

“As a result, other employers were forced to pay a corruption tax in the form of higher rates. That?s wrong, and we need to find out now why and how it happened and who was involved.”

Where is Montgomery?

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