Office of the State Auditor releases audit of Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Water QualityThe Office of the State Auditor recently released its audit of the Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Water Quality, identifying misappropriation of public funds by a former Division of Water Quality employee.

The Office of the State Auditor found that the former employee was improperly reimbursed for travel costs amounting to at least $20,404 from July 2006 through October 2016 based on fictitious hotel invoices. The office also estimates that $124,049 in salary was paid to the employee during these purported business trips.

In late 2016, Department of Environmental Quality personnel found irregularities in a hotel invoice related to a travel reimbursement request submitted by this particular employee. When questioned, the employee resigned his position. The Department of Environmental Quality began an investigation to identify the scope of the problem and noted that inappropriate travel reimbursements had occurred for at least several years. The Department of Environmental Quality notified the Office of the State Auditor to request assistance.

The Office of the State Auditor conducted a more in-depth investigation and noted a pervasive pattern of questionable travel documentation dating back for at least a decade. The audit report details the findings and recommendations.

The report may be found online.

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Jason Gottfried is a freelance editor, writer, multi-instrumental musician, and composer transplanted to Utah from Nashville by way of Gainesville, Florida. He was formerly opinion editor of The Independent and wrote album reviews, opinion pieces, and satire news. Before that, he was editor of SOKY Happenings magazine and wrote a column, The Vociferous Vegan. He was also general manager of Nashville’s fabled The Wild Cow Vegetarian Restaurant and briefly co-owner of Gainesville's longtime staple vegetarian restaurant, Book Lover's Cafe. When he is away from the computer, he plays between Colorado and California as a live and session musician. His albums with Sean McDonald as ambient electroacoustic duo Vesica Piscis are streaming online: indolerecords.bandcamp.com/album/twin-yang mmmsound.bandcamp.com/album/optical-mystic He sexually identifies as an Apache AH-64 attack helicopter.