Wednesday, June 10, 2015
Senate Republican Caucus Calls for Travel Trust Fund Investigation
Boston- Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) and members of the Senate Republican Caucus have called on the state’s Inspector General to initiate a comprehensive investigation into the diversion of trust funds from state authorities to a travel account controlled by the Patrick Administration during his tenure as governor.
“The Senate Republican Caucus believes that an investigation should begin immediately to ascertain whether the transfer and use of these funds was as a result of improper actions or if any fraud, waste, or abuse has occurred,” said Tarr. “It appears that these transfers were made in such a manner as to elude disclosure and circumvent accountability.”
In a letter to Inspector General Glenn Cunha, the Senate Republican Caucus called recent news reports of travel junkets paid for with trust fund monies from agencies “startling and deeply concerning.” The senators wrote, “These expenditures, and the transfers to the trusts that made them possible, seem to have circumvented the statutory and regulatory processes in place that would otherwise have made them subject to transparency, accountability, and examination by the legislature and other state agencies.”
“It is my hope that we can have an independent agency look at these expenditures to make sure that the public is fully aware of every tax dollar that is being expended, and the exact purpose of each expenditure. I am confident the Inspector General will do a fair and thorough investigation,” said Senator Vinny deMacedo (R-Plymouth) ranking Republican member of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. “I hope to be able to assure my constituents that as we face tough budget deficits, all their tax dollars have been used prudently and legally without the circumventing the legislature.”
Senate Republican Caucus Letter to IG Travel Trust Funds