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IRS Workers Spent $493K on Personal Purchases Using Corporate Cards

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Almost one hundred Internal Revenue Service workers spent nearly $500,000 on useless items, including pornography, diet pills, romance novels, popcorn machines, wine and Nerf footballs using their corporate credit card. None of the employees were disciplined.

The report found 94 employees used their cards to buy personal items between 2010 and 2011. Twenty-two of those had done it more than once in six months.

It has sparked criticism over the agency's internal monitoring.

Two cards were used to buy online pornography, but the employees said the cards were stolen. They also found that one IRS employee spent $2,655 on diet pills, romance novels, steaks, a smartphone and baby-related items. 

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Other questionable purchases included $3,152 to rent a popcorn machine and buy prizes for an employee event, $418 on novelty decorations for a manager's meeting, and $119 on Nerf footballs.

Overall, the IRS spent $108 million on their credit cards, but most of these purchases were legitimate. They use the General Services Administration's SmartPay, which allows employees to buy work-related items. The max amount for a purchase is $3,000. 

The exact amount of miscellaneous personal purchases on IRS employee credit cards was $493,000. Though none of the employees were disciplined, they are continuing to investigate the credit cards which were allegedly stolen and used for pornography.

"Clearly, any inappropriate card use impacts our bottom line and is cause for concern," acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel said. "Wasteful spending cannot be tolerated, and any employees found to be abusing the system will be held accountable. In fact, we are following up on several inappropriate incidents mentioned in the report, ranging from internal actions to criminal charges."

"That said, more than 99.75 percent of IRS purchases adhered to the rules."

Sources: Daily Mail, NY Post