County reviewing options over audit

JOHNSTOWN — Fulton County Community Services Director Ernest Gagnon said Tuesday he will meet soon with County Attorney Jason Brott to review the county owing the state from a mental health Medicaid audit that reverts back to 2006.

Gagnon reported on the situation in January to the Board of Supervisors’ Human Services Committee. At the time, he said it may cost the county more to seek legal recourse in the matter than simply write a check to the state.

He touched on the funding issue again Tuesday with the committee at the County Office Building.

Money is owed to the state Department of Health by the Fulton County Community Services Department from a state Office of Mental Health audit done for 2006-08. The issue involves an audit regarding recoupment of Comprehensive Outpatient Program payments. Fulton County operated its own mental health clinic until Dec. 31, 2011. After closure, the county no longer received Medicaid for the facility.

Gagnon told supervisors this week that he planned to talk to Brott this week about the issue. He said a better report on the funding situation will be given to the committee on March 27.

“I’ll bring back his recommendation and we’ll see where we go from there,” Gagnon stated.

At this point, he is estimating the county could owe the state about $157,000. County officials have talked about possibly using contingency funding to pay off the state.

Officials say Fulton County isn’t the only county owing the state for old Medicaid auditing.

County Administrative Officer Jon Stead asked if the state has received recoupment from other counties, but the answer wasn’t readily available.

“Do we really want to pay in advance?” asked Stead.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

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