Board: Puerto Rico education agency paid $84M to non-workers

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – A federal control board that oversees Puerto Rico’s finances announced Wednesday that it has contacted federal and local law enforcement agencies after discovering the island’s Department of Education paid more than $84 million to people who no longer work there.

The payments were made from 2007 to 2020, with the department recovering only 15% of that money so far, said Natalie Jaresko, the board’s executive director. She noted the agency only recently implemented an electronic attendance system even though it had invested in one more than a decade ago, adding that she didn’t know what amount of funds might have been erroneously distributed.

Jaresko asked that all those who were paid even though they no longer worked for the agency voluntarily return the money, adding that it’s “very possible” people collected the checks of workers who died. An estimated 17,500 former employees overall received checks,

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Health Agency Heads Field Heated Questions On Vaccines, Independence Of Scientists

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, NIH infectious disease chief Anthony Fauci and CDC Director Robert Redfield testified on the state of the coronavirus pandemic before a Senate panel Wednesday.

The Hill:
Health Officials Tell Public To Trust In Science 

Trump administration health officials on Wednesday told a Senate panel that Americans should not lose faith in public health agencies or the vaccine development process, despite a recent spate of political interference. The officials sought to defend the scientific integrity of the administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic while reassuring Americans growing increasingly skeptical over the politicization of a vaccine for the virus. (Weixel, 9/23)

FDA Chief: ‘I Will Fight For Science’ 

Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn sought to reassure the public Wednesday that any Covid-19 vaccine approved by the agency would be safe and effective, but offered few details on the bar for emergency use. “FDA will not

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