Fri, Apr 27, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Environmental department accused of expenses fraud

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff reporter

A Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City councilor yesterday accused the city’s Department of Environmental Protection of pocketing about NT$10 million (US$340,000) by falsifying gas receipts, urging the city government to launch an investigation.

The department was accused of having falsified gas receipts for administrative vehicles, such as garbage trucks, and pocketing about NT$10 million by inflating the figures by 200,000 liters in 2009 and 2010, DPP Taipei City Councilor Lin Shih-chung (林世宗) said, as he accused the department of wasting taxpayers’ money.

“None of the divisions’ monthly invoices on gasoline match the gasoline receipts from gas stations, and this is clearly a collective fraud,” he said during a press conference at Taipei City Council.

According to information collected by Lin, the gas receipts of the department’s administrative vehicles totaled nearly 3.9 million liters in 2009, and about 3.2 million liters in 2010.

However, monthly reports on the administrative vehicles stated that gasoline usage was 3.8 million liters in 2009 and about 3.1 million liters in 2010.

“The 200,000 liters discrepancy in the report and receipts show that the department has been lying about gasoline use and trying to pocket taxpayers’ money. Such an amount of gasoline can fuel more than 3,000 cars,” he said.

In response, chief secretary of the department Lu Shih-chang (盧世昌) said the department used gasoline cards at CCP gas stations, and each card was specifically assigned to each car so that drivers could not use them to fill up different cars.

He said the 200,000 liters of gasoline were used to fill up lawn trackers and other machines for public use, and said the discrepancy was due to administrative negligence when filing the usage reports.

Taipei City’s Department of Ethics promised to look into the reasons behind the discrepancies in the usage reports.

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