The Office of the Legislative Auditor (OLA) released a report on Thursday that highlighted more fraud, waste, and abuse coming from Minnesota’s management of pandemic funds. This "spot check" analyzed over $400 million in funds out of billions allocated from the Federal government. There are millions in misallocated funds in this snapshot from the OLA - meaning there is likely more abuse that has yet to be uncovered.
As you may recall, the federal government printed trillions in new cash in 2020 and 2021 for pandemic programs. Many of these funds were laundered into fraudulent programs, like Feeding Our Future. This phony nonprofit stole at least $250 million in taxpayer funds.
Now, the OLA has revealed that eight state agencies were non-compliant instances “related to obtaining and using emergency purchasing authority; managing the inventory of COVID-19 supplies and equipment; funding, payment, and support for expenditures; and final reporting on emergency purchases.”
In other words, bureaucrats in Minnesota’s state government went rogue and ignored policies and procedures meant to protect taxpayer dollars. Among these agencies that abused their power was the Office of the Lieutenant Governor.
Lt Governor Peggy Flanagan’s office appears to have misused as much as $13,110 in federal funds. Secretary of State Steve Simon, on the other hand, made $459,539 in unauthorized purchases.
Will there be any accountability for this misuse of funds? Unlikely. The leading publication that is reporting on this mess is the Minneapolis StarTribune. Their new CEO, former Department of Employment and Economic Development, Steve Grove, was also accused of mismanaging funds.
In total, millions of dollars were misused at the hands of Democrats who control Minnesota’s government. It is sad to say that many will not be surprised.