Auditors: MEMA Misspent Nearly $18 Million

That bill, delivered during one of the worst financial years in Mississippi in decades, includes funds spent to manage grants and overpayments to local governments, primarily for debris removal. The interest alone is $1 million.

More than $8 million of that amount is traced back to contracts with Jackson-based accounting firm Horne LLP, which was hired by the state to keep track of the disaster money.

The report says most of the suspect accounting charges came from overpaying for document preparation. The report claims MEMA gave the firm $7.7 million too much by paying between $87 and $109 per hour for workers to electronically scan and code grant paperwork.

The report, released earlier this month, was produced by the US Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General.
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