A recent accounts payable audit has called the spending practices of career placement service Capital Area Michigan Works into question after it was determined that taxpayer money had been used to fund country club memberships, according to the Lansing State Journal.
The money was also found to have been used to reimburse agency employees for expenses related to tuition.
Doug Stites, chief executive officer of the organization, acknowledged that a single social membership to the Country Club of Lansing costs an annual fee of $2,880, but defended the expense as necessary in order for agency officials to network as well as hold infrequent meetings, the newspaper reports.
With regard to tuition reimbursement, Stites maintained that offering employees financial assistance to further their studies helped to encourage staff development.
Additional expenses were also questioned, including meal and hotel costs accrued on a weekend retreat that significantly exceeded the boundaries of funding set by the state government, according to the Detroit News.
Although Michigan Works officials are not employed by the government, the agency is partially funded by the state, the news source explains.