$20,000 Spent on DOT Recreational Basketball Machines
On December 18, 2013, John C. Beale, a former employee and manager at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was sentenced to 32 months for defrauding the agency of nearly $1 million over 13 years. Beale was once the highest-paid employee at the agency, and a leading expert on climate change. Earlier in the month, Beale plead guilty to duping his co-managers and fellow employees into believing that he was working for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Read the Full Article.
Spending In The News
- Social Security Overpayment
- According to CNN, August 2013, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released an update to their 2011 report on improper payments made by the Social Security Disability Insurance (DI) program. The report said approximately 36,000 people had received overpayments from December 2010 to January 2013 (the exact number could not be determined without more detailed case investigations). Read More Spendopedia.
- Lack of Oversight Found In Medicare Prescriptions
- On June 20, 2013, ProPublica, an independent nonprofit newsroom, uncovered a Department Of Health and Human Services (HHS) report that revealed more than 700 doctors nationwide had written questionable prescriptions for elderly and disabled patients that could have been potentially harmful. The IG report, over $352 million was spent on questionable prescriptions in 2009. Read More on Spendopedia.
- In July 2013 the U.S. State Department Inspector General (IG) issued an audit of the Bureau of Information Resource Management (IRM) Office of Information Assurance. It was determined that the bureau, which was created to address information security, was wasteful and redundant and in need of oversight.
- In March 2011, Vehicle Production Group (VPG), a company that manufactures vans for the disabled, received a $50 million loan from the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) through the same program that invested heavily in Fisker Automotive and Solyndra. In May 2013, VPG quietly fired its 100 employees and shut down operations. Although it has not filed for bankruptcy, taxpayers lost $42 million on the deal.
- The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has financially supported the Afghan Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) since 2008. The project continued in spite of early warnings about the Ministry's lack of internal controls.
- On June 17, 2013, the Pentagon announced it planned to spend more than three-quarters of a billion dollars to buy helicopters and other aircraft for the Afghan Specials Mission Wing even though it knew the Afghan aviation team had neither the skills nor the number of troops necessary to maintain the equipment. The Huffington Post said, "These shortcomings mean the helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft destined for the Afghan Special Mission Wing 'could be left sitting on runways in Afghanistan, rather than supporting critical missions, resulting in waste of U.S. funds.'"