Audit Reveals NE Retirement System Wastes Millions on Computer System

August 4, 2006 ( - An audit of Nebraska's public retirement board revealed that the system squandered millions on an outdated computer network, which prompted the committee to call for the resignation of the board's director.

The audit of the Public Employees Retirement Board by a legislative committee unearthed a fear among system employees of retaliation if they complained about the problem-ridden computer system.

The audit of the Public Employees Retirement Board was done by the Legislature’s Performance Audit Section.

Senator Chris Beutler, who heads the committee, told the AP employees reported to auditors that they saw problems with the computer system as well as with the way the office functioned “but were kept silent by a fear of retaliation, including the possible loss of employment.” He said that fear exacerbated problems that could have been taken care of earlier.

The board bought the computer system in 1999 and has since spent more than $16 million to build the system, which runs off a computer language that will soon be defunct.

“The system … now must be rewritten at an additional cost of $5 million to $6 million,” Beutler said. “And that rewrite is not expected to solve the remaining problems with the way the system functions.”