Cornwall woman ordered to pay welfare $10,600

The front entrance to the Cornwall courthouse at 29 Second Street West. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

CORNWALL – A Cornwall woman will have to pay back over $10,000 to Ontario Works after being convicted and sentenced for welfare fraud.

Melissa Wattie, 40, was sentenced last month in a Cornwall court after being found guilty on a single count of fraud over $5,000.

Wattie had failed to declare changes in her living arrangements to the Ontario Works Resource Center and received welfare overpayments between 2014 and 2016.

Judge Rick Leroy gave Wattie a suspended sentence and three years probation plus 25 hours of community service.

Court records show the probation may be shortened if Wattie pays back the money before that time but the long probationary period was to “ensure monthly payments.”