GOP senator asks if ‘human side’ worsened unemployment fraud

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Kansas state Sen. Caryn Tyson, R-Parker, makes a point during a meeting of a new council on unemployment issues, Tuesday, July 13, 2021, at the Statehouse in Topeka, Kan. The council is preparing to launch an audit of unemployment fraud, and Tyson wants it to examine whether the state did adequate background checks on several hundred employees it hired to handle a surge in unemployment claims. (AP Photo/John Hanna)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Republican lawmaker questions whether Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s administration did adequate background checks on several hundred people Kansas hired to help handle a surge in unemployment claims during the coronavirus pandemic.

Sen. Caryn Tyson, of Parker, raised the issue Tuesday as the state prepares to launch a new investigation of unemployment fraud.

She serves on a new council created by lawmakers that is charged with auditing unemployment fraud and said she wants the audit to examine what kind of checks the state did on more than 400 workers it hired.

But Democratic Rep. Stephanie Clayton of Overland Park said the state hired workers quickly because lawmakers demanded it.

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