APRIL 25, 2007
U.S. Government employees have for years cheated American taxpayers out of hundreds of millions of dollars by defrauding a transit benefit program that provides free public transportation passes to all federal workers.
The Federal Transit Benefits Program aims to save gas, cut pollution and unclog roads by spending about $250 million a year to give all government employees free bus and subway passes. Instead, many employees drive to work anyways and sell the passes for cash.
Details of the rampant fraud, waste and abuse of this federal program are provided in a newly released Congressional investigative report from the Government Accountability Office. The 30-page document includes appalling anecdotes of government employees openly selling their passes on the internet for an untaxed cash profit.
One federal employee in Washington D.C. advertised his metro card as never expiring and brand new. The employee actually writes that he is selling the pass because he has too many since he receives them monthly as a work benefit.
Another case features a married couple that drove to work at the Department of Defense and made about $6,000 with 61 separate sales of transit cards on the popular shopping web site, Ebay.
Auditors also found that many employees intentionally falsified their transportation costs to receive excess benefits and numerous former government workers continued receiving the costly transit passes years after leaving their federal job.
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