Wednesday, July 19, 2006

More On Katrina Refief Funds

We're already seen where many of the poor, displaced Katrina refugees spent the taxpayer money they were given following the hurricane. You've probably heard about the alcohol, lap dances, porn and drugs that many of the "unfortunates" received using our taxpayer money. Here's more evidence of governmental incompetence when it came to Katrina. This time, it involves purchases made by Homeland Security employees using government spending cards. Again, these were purchases by federal employees (using our tax money) for emergency relief use. Among the items found by the audit...

More than 100 laptop computers and a dozen boats bought by Homeland Security employees, computers and boats which are now missing

More than 2,000 sets of dog booties, costing $68,442, that have sat unused in storage since emergency responders decided they were not suited for canines assisting in Gulf Coast recovery efforts.

Three portable shower units for $71,170 from a contractor who investigators said overcharged the government. Customs and Border Protection agents could have gotten similar showers for nearly a third of the price, and faster.

12 Apple iPod Nanos and 42 iPod Shuffles, worth $7,000, for Secret Service "training and data storage."

37 black Helly Hansen designer rain jackets, costing nearly $2,500, for use in a firing range that the Customs and Border Protection purchaser later acknowledged shuts down when it's raining.

Conference and hotel rooms at a golf and tennis resort at St. Simons Island in Georgia, worth $2,395, for training 32 newly hired attorneys when they could have used a nearby federal law enforcement training center.

A beer brewing kit and ingredients for more than $1,000 for a Coast Guard official to brew alcohol while on duty as a social organizer for the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. "The estimated price for a six-pack of USCG beer was $12," the investigators noted, adding: "Given that the six-pack cost of most beers is far less than $12, it is difficult to demonstrate that the Academy is achieving cost savings by brewing its own beer."

Homeland Security isn't the only agency singled out in the audit.

Customs and Border Protection wasted up to $464,586 by buying meals-ready-to-eat over the Internet instead of contracting through the Pentagon, as is standard procedure.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency cannot locate 107 laptops, 22 printers and two GPS units worth $170,000. FEMA also cannot find 12 of 20 boats the agency bought for $208,000.

Our tax money at work, folks...