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California Audit Identifies $400,000 In Waste, Misuse

(AP) - California state auditors have identified nearly $400,000 in undisclosed gifts and wasted money due to improper travel expenses and mismanagement at state agencies.

In a report Thursday, the auditor details seven substantiated investigations from several state agencies, including $75,000 paid to a public health official for driving to work.

Most of the wasted money stemmed from the California Department of Transportation's failure to collect or bill nearly $315,000 for rent and utilities from tenants of a San Joaquin Valley mobile home park.

A state parks department peace officer improperly accepted $4,800 worth of designer sunglasses, while a parks supervisor used her work-issued cell phone to sell beauty products on the side.

Auditors also found a district engineer approved $3.9 million in payments to the firm that employed his spouse.

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