Yesterday's Washington Post scoop on misused funds in the oil royalty program of the Interior Department is worth catching up on. The graft was extreme, even as far as these things go.
Investigators from the Interior Department's inspector general's office said more than a dozen employees, including the former director of the oil royalty program, took meals, ski trips, sports tickets and golf outings from industry representatives. The report alleges that the former director, Gregory W. Smith, also netted more than $30,000 from improper outside work.
The inspector general's release comprised three separate reports, including one devoted to the program's former director, Smith, 56, who resigned last year. It alleges that Smith improperly worked part time for Geomatrix Consultants, an Oakland, Calif.-based environmental and engineering firm, and marketed the company to government clients.
Additionally, the report said, Smith had an inappropriate sexual relationship with a subordinate whom he paid to buy cocaine, allegedly promising her a $250 bonus in return.
But it's topped by the latest update to the story.
On Monday, the Interior Department was praised for "developing a dynamic laminated Ethics Guide for employees" that was a "polished, professional guide" with "colorful pictures and prints which demand employees' attention." The guide, the award noted, was small enough for employees to carry. Interior also was lauded for having held a four-day seminar for its ethics advisors nationwide.
I guess the lamination made it easier to snort coke off of it.