Guard Bureau Officials Look Into Fraud Allegations
By Air Force Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke
National Guard Bureau
ARLINGTON, Va., Nov. 1, 2010 National Guard Bureau officials are looking into allegations of fraud and abuse and, if necessary, revamping procedures for detecting fraud after it was discovered that several states may have disbursed funds as enlistment bonuses to those who may not have qualified for them.
"I am concerned and deeply disappointed about recent allegations involving mismanagement of funds in several state National Guards,” said Air Force Gen. Craig R. McKinley, chief of the National Guard Bureau. “These allegations will be thoroughly investigated by experts from across the NGB, [the Defense Department] and other federal entities. No stone will be left unturned.”
McKinley added that he has directed a review of National Guard Bureau management controls designed to prevent and detect potential financial mismanagement or abuse.
“I have directed U.S. fiscal and property officers in selected states to review similar controls at the state level,” McKinley said. “The results of these reviews will be submitted to me as soon as is practicable.”
The results of the review will be shared throughout the 54 states, territories and the District of Columbia to ensure the Guard’s personnel and processes abide by established legal and ethical standards, officials said.
McKinley has directed all fiscal and property officers to conduct a quick-reaction audit and review of pay compensation programs.
“I expect these actions to be your Priority One objective between now and the end of the calendar year,” McKinley said in a memorandum to the states’ adjutants general dated Oct. 29.
The allegations of fraud first surfaced in a news article in the Sacramento Bee newspaper after federal auditors reported them to the FBI and the Internal Revenue Service while looking into the disbursement of funds.