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More workers, swipe cards part of Doyle plan to fight abuse in child care program

Gov. Jim Doyle has announced part of his plan to reform Wisconsin Shares, the state-funded child care program for the working poor.

On Wednesday, Doyle asked legislators to require that parents use electronic swipe cards whenever their kids go in and out of daycare centers.

Also, the governor wants to hire more state employees to watch for fraud.

Doyle also said he would propose other changes when he submits his 2009-11 budget package to the Legislature next Tuesday.

Henry Wilde, deputy secretary of the state children and families' department, says Doyle is committed to reforming the program as quickly as possible.

That's after the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel uncovered numerous abuses in the $340 million Wisconsin Shares program. Low-income recipients and their child care providers get state funding under the program.

But the paper found that some parents reported false jobs to get a state subsidy and four sisters cared for each other's children to call themselves an eligible provider.

The newspaper stories resulted in criminal investigations in Racine County which are still pending.