Family Ties fails to provide money or accounting

March 4, 2013
Lisa Niesen

Lisa Niesen

Keeping them homeless

By KAREN VELIE, JOSH FRIEDMAN and DANIEL BLACKBURN

(Editor’s note: This is the seventh in a series about San Luis Obispo County Homeless Services and the nonprofits managing the program.)

A San Luis Obispo based fiduciary has failed to return a formerly homeless man’s money or to provide an accounting for expenditures as requested.

Cliff Anderson agreed to make Family Ties his representative payee in 2009. After becoming homeless in the aftermath of a fire at his apartment, Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo (CAPSLO) case managers told Anderson making Family Ties his payee would guarantee him a bed at the Maxine Lewis Homeless Shelter.

The saved money was supposed to be used to help place the now 69-year-old into housing.

In late January, Anderson asked his CAPLSO case manager for money for a pair of shoes. When rebuffed, he asked for an accounting of the $41,420 in Social Security payments sent to Family Ties since 2009. His CAPSLO case manager, who gave him a weekly check from Family Ties for $100, failed to provide him an accounting.

On Feb. 14, under a limited power of attorney for financial records requests, CalCoastNews served both CAPSLO and Family Ties with a demand for an accounting of Anderson’s funds. Lisa Niesen is the president of Family Ties and San Luis Obispo County’s chief deputy public guardian.

On Feb. 18, Anderson’s attorney Stew Jenkins, sent a demand for the return of Anderson’s money to Family Ties and canceled his CAPSLO case management.

Anderson currently is in privately arranged housing, but is unable to pay his rent and other bills because Niesen controls his funds. Niesen called Anderson Feb. 21 at about 9 p.m. telling him he could lose his housing if he did not tell her where he lived “so she could write a check for his rent.” She did not write a check for his rent or return his money to him.

Shortly after midnight on Feb. 22, Niesen and a friend arrived at Anderson’s rental wanting him to sign documents that Family Ties was not required to produce an accounting as legally requested. He did not sign.

CAPSLO has not responded to the records request. Family Ties hired attorney Joseph Diehl who responded to the request on Thursday with a letter stating Anderson’s accounting will not be turned over until he has a chance to review the records. Diehl has not yet turned over the records.

CAPSLO claims that clients’ funds are returned within 24 hours of canceling case management. However, Anderson’s money, which could be between $5,000 and $22,000, has not been returned to him. Family Ties failed to follow federal laws while serving as a fiduciary for Anderson, as a result, his Social Security disability benefits have been suspended.

 


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BeenThereDoneThat

I like this


“CAPSLO has not responded to the records request. Family Ties hired attorney Joseph Diehl who responded to the request on Thursday with a letter stating Anderson’s accounting will not be turned over until he has a chance to review the records. Diehl has not yet turned over the records.”


Well there may be no records to review. My guess is that MAYBE someone, somewhere is busy making up records as we speak, so they have something to show. If the records where there, we wouldn’t all be talking about this now would we???


tomsquawk

oh come on. give them time to find a sharpie so the documents can be redacted. oh, excuse me, to protect the indigent


BeenThereDoneThat

But back to my original point. I agree on the redacting but you have to have docs. to redact in the first place.


SLOBIRD

So now, Joseph Diehl, husband of Julie Roldwald, County Clerk/Recorder adds a new layer of County envolvement to this sad and pathic story. Unbelievable!


BeenThereDoneThat

WHOA, WHOA, WHAT???!!!!! Are you kiddng me??? I didn’t know that. OMG you are soooooooooooooo right about pathetic story.


BeenThereDoneThat

Talk about keep it in the family. The whole county offices, between relationships and business dealings, seems like one big incestuous relationship.


kettle

Link to this info?


Because that doesn’t make any sense.


tomsquawk

no kiddin’ A


SLOBIRD

Yep, same Julie Roldwald who took in Gibson’s assistance, Cherie. when his story broke and the heat was on. Lots of personal favors past through those halls and offices. Look at Niesen working full time for the County as Deputy Public Guardian and then doing same type of work privately under Family Ties, a bogus non-profit corporation as advertised on the Internet using the County work phone number and the County Council says no conflict of Internet. Disclaimer: Unless you are a County employee or elected official we do not advise you to do this at home. First, get a job with the County San Luis Obispo, preferably in the BOS office at directly associated with a department head. Thank you, County taxpayers.


BeenThereDoneThat

WAIT A MINUTE, Roldwald took in Gibson’s assistant? This just gets better and better, sadly.


justchuck

Arriving after midnight? I guess vampires (the blood-sucking type) do not want to be exposed to sunlight.


racket

Seems like Debbie Arnold could be the linch pin to this.


1) She’s on the CAPSLO board.

2) She’s on the BOS.

3) She’s an outsider, and not subject to whatever machinations led to this sorry state.

4) She’s a pot-stirrer, and looking to expand her reputation as same.


I wonder if she’s up to the task?


SLOBIRD

She has so many issues, many dealing with corruption and back room deals with the current supervisors and staff deals that she has to move slowly, carefully and cautionsly since she has already been targeted by the fish wrap as a Board trouble maker and she hasn’t even fully engaged. The vampires are wanting for her first BIG move. She will gt there!


r0y

Or it might be like the Oceano CSD (or was it Grover?) the CSD that burned through 15 dept. heads in a year or two… Maybe we’ll get that soon at a City and County BoS level.


katara

I have been reading the articles CCN has written about CAPSLO, and I think there needs to be an investigation by the California State Attorney General. Where is the oversight on this agency who is handling/controlling the money for people who are mentally ill, elderly, injured; essentially the most vulnerable among us who may not know or be well enough to understand their rights.


These articles are sickening and disheartening. I have no doubt working with the homeless can be a demanding and strenuous job, but to take advantage/intimidate them in this way is just disgusting.


rogerfreberg

Thank you CCN for being the only investigative news service in the county. As sad as it is to see the sordid details of local governments and nonprofits …


I think the glimpses you provide do open a lot of eyes.


tomsquawk

now let’s call & write our reps


r0y

I say call and write the TRIBUNE, KSBY and whatever else calls itself “news” and ask why they have ignored this for so long? Just the interpersonal connections of all involved are enough to raise SERIOUS RED FLAGS for anyone looking at it.


tomsquawk

well, what gov agency has oversight, file a complaint, write our congressman……..do any good?


SLOBIRD

Yea. like Lois Capps would touch this with a 10 ft stick. Definitely would not be politically correct for her and besides, she would have to get permission from the Democratic Party ad that is not likely to happen considering CAPSLO board of directors, superivors Hill and Gibson, and of course the management are all Democratic.


tomsquawk

birds of a feather


ironyman2000

I;ve been around a few blocks a few times and have NEVER seen an org so convoluted as CAPSLO.

It really must be replaced with something based on logic, ethics and sanity.


Maxfusion

“Shortly after midnight on Feb. 22, Niesen and a friend arrived at Cliff’s rental wanting him to sign documents that Family Ties was not required to produce an accounting as legally requested. He did not sign.”


Wow, and they lawyer up to review a 41K account. Remarkably nothing on a criminal level will come of this. The good old gal gang will cover for them.


danika

He gave $41,420 since 2009 and may only get $5k back? What!??


Predators, the lot of them! This financial pillaging has GOT to stop!


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