Assemblymember Alvarez to Request Audit of Franchise Tax Board’s Handling of Middle Class Tax Refunds

Californians are struggling to deal with rising inflation, higher rents and food costs

Assemblymember David Alvarez (D-San Diego), Chair of the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, has announced his intention to pursue an audit of the Franchise Tax Board’s (FTB) handling of the Middle Class Tax Refunds. Assemblymember Alvarez and other legislators are concerned about reports from constituents and the media regarding fraudulently stolen funds and a lack of responsiveness by the FTB.

I have heard from many of my constituents that have not received their refund or have not been able to seek assistance from the FTB regarding this issue,” said Assemblymember Alvarez. “Californians are struggling to deal with rising inflation, higher rents and food costs, and many are counting on refunds promised to them last year to make ends meet. I am hopeful that this audit will provide transparency to FTB’s processes and efforts to ensure Californians are receiving their refunds in a timely and secure manner.

The scope of the audit will include, but not be limited to, answering the following questions:

  • How prevalent is fraud involving the debit cards connected to the Middle Class Tax Refunds?
  • Has FTB’s fraud detection and reduction efforts been sufficient and effective?
  • Does FTB adequately protect Californians’ privacy and personal information?
  • Has FTB been sufficiently available and responsive to Californians experiencing fraud?
  • Has FTB provided Middle Class Tax Refunds to all Californians entitled to them?
  • Has FTB provided sufficient oversight to the vendor issuing debit cards?

Assemblymember Alvarez will formally present his audit request at the next Joint Legislative Audit Committee meeting.

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