(WAUSEON, OH) — Fulton County Job and Family Services Child Support Enforcement Agency was chosen to receive the I-70 project award. Officials from the Ohio Office of Child Support Enforcement hosted a video conference today at the Detwiler Building, home of Fulton County Job and Family Services – Child Support. Representatives from Fulton County CSEA had the opportunity to share their best practices, accomplishments and collection efforts to their counterparts throughout the state via the video conference.
Amy Metz-Simon, Fulton County Job and Family Services Director notes “Not only has Fulton County been awarded the April Achievement Award for reaching it’s goal on the I-70 project, but we finished first in Paternity Establishments the past three years for a small to medium sized county.” In 2015, parents supported their children by working with the Child Support unit for a collection total of over $6.9 million.
“This Achievement Award is a direct reflection of the dedication and persistence of our staff.”
Each federal fiscal year, the federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE) distributes funding to state IV-D agencies based on achievement in five incentive categories. OCSE measures performance in the category of Collection of Current Support by dividing the total amount of current child support distributed statewide by the total amount of current child support owed. Although Ohio consistently ranks in the top five of all states for this category, an increase in the current support collection rate to 70 percent would allow Ohio to reach the next benchmark in federal collection goals. This would provide for a greater share of the OCSE-distributed federal funding.
As a result, Project I-70 was created to challenge and encourage Ohio CSEAs to develop innovative processes and share best practices in their collection efforts. As part of this initiative, OCS conducts video conferences with both management and line staff in all county CSEAs.
Video conferences are held on-site at a different CSEA who have shown extraordinary effort in their initiative. The CSEA is presented with an achievement award. During these video conferences, OCS reviews statewide performance data from the previous month and recognizes other CSEAs that demonstrated collection effort improvements. State and county participants present and agency staff discusses work lists and other tools that identify specific cases in need of additional attention. Fulton County received the November 2015 “Best Performance” for a small to medium sized county for their efforts in collections in the I-70 project, and is again being recognized in 2016.
LuAnn Stiriz, Fulton County CSEA supervisor states, “When the I-70 project began, our percentage of collection rate on current support was 76.35 % — last month it was 79.88%— This FFY we have an average increase of 2.92% compared to the same time period last year. Our success can be credited to the hard work of our staff, other Fulton County partners and to the parents who pay their support.”