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A DMV worker slept at her desk regularly and other stories from the state audit

From a sleeping DMV worker to an unauthorized structure built by on-duty CAL FIRE employees, here are the craziest stories to come out of the California Investigation of Improper Activities by State Agencies and Employees.

A recent state audit of improper activities by State Agencies and employees revealed that employees from several agencies cost the state approximately $160,000 due to misused time.

The state auditor investigated 1,481 cases between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018. The cases include examples of improper governmental activities, "including misuse of state time and inaccurate attendance records, economically wasteful activities, and misuse of government property."

Here are some of the craziest findings:

  • A key data operator at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) had reportedly been sleeping at her desk for "extended periods of time" during work hours regularly for nearly four years. The report states that the employee misused 2,200 hours of work time, costing the state more than $40,000.
  • A CAL FIRE Assistant Chief reportedly misused state resources when he used on-duty staff to build an unauthorized structure on state property, violating his rental agreement. The 16 foot by 20 foot structure was complete with plumbing, electrical and sewer connections. It was built in the backyard of a state residence he rented from CAL FIRE without written approval.
  • Two employees at California State University - Fresno reportedly left campus or took extended breaks regularly between 2013 and 2017. Between the two employees, more than 5,100 hours of work was paid for but not performed, costing the state $111,000. According to the audit, the employees were dishonest in their attempt to conceal the time and attendance abuse.
  • For more than a year, the Director of Nursing at a Southern California adult prison removed a personal friend, who worked at the facility as a licensed vocational nurse (LVN), from her assigned position to another usually filled by an office technician. The LVN continued to receive pay as a nurse, even though she only saw patients when she worked the occasional overnight shift. This cost the California Correctional Health Care Services to waste $10,500 in unnecessary salary payments and an additional $18,700 in unnecessary overtime payments as other nurses had to cover the LVN's original post.

To read the full report, visit the California State Auditor website.

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