If you’ve had any sympathy at all for the Postal Service and their financial woes over the years, you may just abandon them after reading this article.
Everyone knows the USPS, which lost an estimated $16 billion in 2012, has been aggressively trying to cut expenses by closing branches and eliminating jobs. And, they’re still waiting for Congress to bail them out and overhaul their operations
The answer to recovery though may lie within the employees it chooses to hire, according to a report from the Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General.
The report, which was released last September, uncovered more than $1 million in bogus travel reimbursements to employees during an 18-month period.
Refunds were given to cover personal expenses like gas, hotel stays, and upgraded plane tickets. Office of Inspector General spokeswoman Agapi Doulaveris didn’t comment on whether any of the charges had been recovered because the investigation is still ongoing.
This is not the first time the USPS has been accused of using government funds for personal use. A similar report from February 2011 made almost identical defrauding accusations totaling more than $600,000, and a 2009 report accused employees of making “imprudent and unnecessary purchases during a time of severe economic uncertainty in the Postal Service.”
Looks like not much has changed over the years! The travesty is enough to make you suspicious of any postal employee.
For its part, the USPS says it’s taking the recommendations from the report and has a plan in place for implementation through January 2014.
Only a toss of the dice will determine whether the Postal Service will finally get their travel expense waste issue under control, but we’re sincerely hoping Congress weeds out the weasels before handing over any financial assistance.