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Potential For Fraud And Abuse With Budget At ICE, Auditing Firm Finds

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A recent study of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) found that there is very little accounting of funds at 4 of the agencies including the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. No surprise really as you'll see a few examples below of the controls they have on their spending.

Bloomberg News

The auditing firm KPMG LLP said for the third straight year it couldn't provide an opinion on the balance sheet of the $40.3 billion Department of Homeland Security, the second-largest federal agency, because of its lax financial controls and oversight.

Auditors said the agency's finances were exposed to possible error and fraud at four of its biggest units: the Coast Guard, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Transportation Security Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

"In the private sector, if a CEO can't account for a corporation's money, he'd be fired," Rep. Dennis Cardoza, a California Democrat, said in an interview. "But in a billion-dollar public agency, nobody says anything. We don't even know how bad the waste or fraud might be."

Yeah, things like a $45,000 bonus for Director of Investigations Marcy Forman-Friedman come to mind. $45k for doing what? Now if half of the illegal aliens in this country were deported I can see her getting a $45,000 bonus, but the reality is that the percentage of illegal aliens in this country that were actually caught, prosecuted and deported is abismal.

Or how about the head of ICE Julie Myers hiring a personal counsel titled "Counsel to the Assistant Secretary" for $140,000 a year when ICE already has a bunch of attorneys on staff? Rumors are that he's probably a crony friend of hers from back in NYC.

Other things include stuff like this over at Debbie Schlussel

... about 60 ICE officials ... will spend the week listening to [Tommy] Lasorda and ... eating steak dinners, all courtesy of you, the American taxpayer. That includes the two travel days that have been allotted for this exercise in waste and abuse.


The event--for which you will also be paying $49 per day in per diem expenses, four nights of hotel stays, and roundtrip airfare per ICE attendee begins ... with a steak dinner ($50 per plate, courtesy of--you guessed it--you!) and a speech by Lasorda. ... In addition to that, sources say that ICE will pay for chauffeur-driven transportation to and from Lasorda's California home to the airport and to and from the Kansas City airport to the hotel, as well as first-class, round-trip airfare.

... ICE Director of Detention and Removal Operations John Torres ... made their attendance mandatory. Not mandatory, but still paid for by you, are the professional photographer ICE is also transporting to the event from Dallas ... Torres does not have enough money to house apprehended illegal aliens, yet he can afford to fly an ICE employee to this event to serve as full-time tax-paid bartender in a tax-funded hospitality suite for the duration of the conference.

Cost for Lasorda's speech alone: $30-50,000

I'm sure things like this are what they're talking about when they say fraud and abuse, but I'm just guessing.

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Posted by Digger on December 25, 2006 08:00 AM (Permalink)

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