US Watchdog's report faults VA chief over Europe trip expenses

19:51  14 february  2018
19:51  14 february  2018 Source:   Associated Press

VA chief becomes latest Trump Cabinet member in trouble for high-priced travel

  VA chief becomes latest Trump Cabinet member in trouble for high-priced travel Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin, traveling on what he said was an "essential" trip to London and Copenhagen, improperly accepted Wimbledon tickets and brought along his wife at taxpayer expense, according to a scathing new inspector general's report. The report says Shulkin and some top staff members made a number of false and misleading statements both to justify the $122,334 trip and in defending it afterwards. His chief of staff, Vivieca Wright Simpson, doctored an email to convince an agency ethics lawyer to approve a $4,300 flight for Shulkin's wife, the report found.

WASHINGTON – An internal watchdog ' s investigation has found that Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin improperly accepted Wimbledon tennis tickets and likely wrongly used taxpayer money to cover his wife's airfare for an 11-day European trip . The report also questions Shulkin's decision to direct

Shulkin' s overseas trip may have involved too much leisure time at taxpayers' expense , according to the report by the agency' s internal watchdog . It found that VA ethics officials should not have approved the commercial airfare for Shulkin' s wife, Merle Bari

WASHINGTON — An internal watchdog's investigation has found that Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin improperly accepted Wimbledon tennis tickets and likely wrongly used taxpayer money to cover his wife's airfare for an 11-day European trip.

The report also questions Shulkin's decision to direct agency staff on official time to arrange his personal sightseeing activities during the July trip to England and Denmark.

The inspector general's audit is the latest in a controversy over misuse of government travel by top Trump administration officials.

Shulkin's lawyers say he did nothing improper. A department spokesman says Shulkin "travels far less than any recent VA secretary" and takes no private jets.

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Source: http://us.pressfrom.com/news/us/-120148-watchdogs-report-faults-va-chief-over-europe-trip-expenses/

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