The Florida Inspector General's report on the investigation of Workforce Central Florida's (WCF) fleet vehicles found that WCF improperly purchased, leased, and disposed of 20 vehicles. It also stated that WCF's purchase of those vehicles for the fleet was an "unallowable expenditure" and more costly than staff reimbursements.
The Agency for Workforce Innovation (AWI) began its investigation after receiving an anonymous complaint about wasteful fleet spending within the WCF. According to the report, WCF purchased the vehicles with a buyback guarantee from a dealership. WCF then decided it needed the money back due to discussions of funding cuts, sold the vehicles to a leasing company for the same purchase price, and then began leasing the vehicles. The report found the agency did this without proper consultation with the state nor proper approvals.
The report recommended that WCF:
- Improve utilization analysis of existing vehicles, determine cost-effectiveness of the fleet, and make changes to cut costs.
- Seek prior approval for expenditures higher than set amount, even if a buyback guarantee results in a lower net cost than the set amount within the same year.
- Comply with federal and state equipment disposal and sales requirements.
- Ensure appropriate arrangements for leasing practices.
- Pay back to the AWI from a non-federal funding source $38,876, the calculated difference between the cost of 20 leased vehicles and total reimbursement cost the prior year.
The WCF is a not-for-profit corporation that receives federal funds from AWI. The agency currently operates 42 vehicles. According to Robby Cunningham, AWI spokesperson, WCF has until Sept. 7 to respond to the report.