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Thread: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

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    Junior Member Frank's Avatar
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    Exclamation USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    Long Story Short. Steelworker Unions go on strike in Massachusetts. National Grid asks USIC for a dedicated crew to locate gas in the Boston area. USIC assembles a crew with an unlimited budget as National Grid gives them a blank check. Audits show massive overbilling. Audits also show USIC technicians from this crew were sent to help other crews. USIC was billing National Grid for locating utilities not even owned by National Grid. National Grid Asset Protection estimating a $1 Million loss and hired a law firm.

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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank View Post
    Long Story Short. Steelworker Unions go on strike in Massachusetts. National Grid asks USIC for a dedicated crew to locate gas in the Boston area. USIC assembles a crew with an unlimited budget as National Grid gives them a blank check. Audits show massive overbilling. Audits also show USIC technicians from this crew were sent to help other crews. USIC was billing National Grid for locating utilities not even owned by National Grid. National Grid Asset Protection estimating a $1 Million loss and hired a law firm.
    To make the short story longer, in the quest for clarity, why does the dteelworkers union going on strike have anything to do with this?
    yahoo likes this.

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    Senior Member daman1's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    While I have been known to enjoy a good USIC bashfest Im not finding anything to corraborate any of this. Links please?

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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    Reminds me of something similar. Years ago Utiliquest had a pay for performance plan. Part of the formula was with number of charges made per ticket. We were on the Baltimore Gas & Electric contract. Part of the BG&E service area the gas was supplied by Washington Gas Light and we had a code for BG&E gas not in the area. This code did not count toards our PFP rating. Turns out that Utiliquest still billed for that code. We found out about it because a new computer programmer "corrected' the program to credit locators PFP rating for those locates. Soon the company wonks realized this and changed it back because "locators should not get credit for work they did not do" while Utiliquest collected money on the cary same 'work'. So we stopped coding gas tickets as Not in Service Area and coded them as No Conflict and got our credit for work done back.

    Soon after Utiliquest dropped the PFP program and sat back rubbing their greedy hands anticipating money rolling in because they paid lower wages. Experienced locators know what happens next, the profits did not increase. First overtime hours went up because locators had not logged all their worked overtime hours to get a higher pay rate. Then production fell and damages went up.

    They were making good profits under PFP but good wasn't enough. Greed is good, don't get TOO greedy.

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    Senior Member yahoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    hopefully Frank will give us the REST of the story.....
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by yahoo View Post
    hopefully Frank will give us the REST of the story.....
    If this did happen and were ordered by corporate it would be nationwide which would bring in the FBI. If it did happen in one area then it is likely done by local manger(s) without corporate's knowledge to pump up their numbers so they look better, even get bonus money.
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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: USIC Being Investigated for Fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by ProfessionalLocator View Post
    If this did happen and were ordered by corporate it would be nationwide which would bring in the FBI. If it did happen in one area then it is likely done by local manger(s) without corporate's knowledge to pump up their numbers so they look better, even get bonus money.
    I know of one incident where I worked years ago, before S&N, a group supervisor cleared and billed tickets as No Conflict himself and not assigning them to a locator to so he could increase his groups productivity numbers. Of course this eventually resulted in a damage and the client noticed. So they stopped the practice and the group supervisor eventually was promoted to Area Manager. Of course a locator would have been fired on the spot. Rules are different when you steal for the company.

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