Photo: Audit Commission
A British public spending watchdog spent millions of dollars of taxpayer money on hotels, parties, fine dining and extravagant conferences under CEO Eugene Sullivan, the Daily Mail reports.The Audit Commission‘s stated primary function, to “protect the public purse,” is obviously now totally discredited.
And as punishment for his extravagant spending, Eric Pickles, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, announced plans to shutter the Commission to make way for another auditor.
After the watchdog’s flagrant disregard for improving their spending habits, it’s more than necessary.
Incredibly, even after it was revealed over summer that the Commission had spent outrageusly both on “salaries and junkets”, it still hosted an $8,000 dinner a few weeks ago at “a grand London venue where royal receptions once took place.”
Here’s a laundry list of the Commission’s spending spree, as reported by the Daily Mail.
Remember all of these purchases were financed on by a Commission that is more than 70% funded by the government.
- $7.7 million on hotels over three years.
- Further $1.1 million on hospitality provided in its own offices.
- $32,000 on a ‘senior stakeholder briefing’ at the New Connaught Rooms – which describes itself as “an opulent and exclusive space for an A-list London event.”
- $24,000 on Steps Drama Learning Development for workshops using actors to illustrate race, gay and ‘work-life balance’ matters
- Restaurant and hotel spending included $21,700 for an auditor’s conference at Leith’s at the British Library
- $12,000 spent at the Newmarket horse races.
- $2,300 on landscaping the grounds around the commission’s offices
- Cash spent on stakeholder briefing’ at a golf and country club.
- Three dinners for groups of MPs at the five-star Royal Horse-guards hotel in Westminster
- ‘Strategic studies development event’ at boutique hotel, Malmaison, in Birmingham
- An awards lunch for housing managers at Hotel du Vin
- ‘Stakeholder briefing’ at the Exeter Golf and Country Club.
Rightfully, people are angry. Here’s what one angry M.P had to say about the numerous splurges, via the Telegraph.
Millions have been squandered on meals and staff jollies at top hotels and restaurants, so it is no wonder they felt they needed to spend another £3.5 million on PR and marketing to justify their existence.
The Audit Commission is about to be scrapped [and] it won’t be missed.