Misbehaving State Workers Cost Taxpayers

Updated: May 22, 2018


The state auditor reported this month that its latest investigations of improper activities by state agencies and employees found several instances of tax dollars being wasted, including:

  • A psychiatric technician did not account for his absences and improperly received $7,500 of overtime pay during a one-year period.

  • An administrative supervisor failed to accurately report her time, which cost the state an estimated $5,200.

  • A University of California at Davis professor improperly received travel and entertainment reimbursements totaling $1,200 for limousine trips and additional travel expenses.

  • Staff at an administrative office within the state prison system hosted an illegal raffle for prizes that included the unauthorized sale of alcoholic beverages.

  • For a 14-month period, a supervisor in the Department of Industrial Relations did not ensure a subordinate was fully productive during work hours, at an estimated cost to the taxpayers of $5,400.

  • An analyst in the Department of Social Services used her state email account to send or receive almost 400 personal emails during a 10-month period.


The report includes information on corrective actions taken from July 1993 through June 2017 in response to past findings of improper activities: 337 reprimands; 12 convictions; 22 demotions; 87 job terminations; 21 resignations or retirements while under investigation (this figure covers a shorter period of time, as the state auditor began tracking resignations and retirements in 2007); 57 pay reductions; and 28 suspensions without pay. (Source: California State Auditor Report I2017-2, October 12.)

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