Homeland Security grant spending questioned amid budget woes
WASHINGTON (AP) - Homeland Security Department money intended for counterterrorism purposes has paid for an underwater robot in a Midwest city with no major rivers or lakes nearby, a hog catcher in rural Texas and a fish tank in a small Texas town.
According to a congressional report highlighting what it describes as wasteful spending, numerous purchases under the department's Urban Area Security Initiative are inappropriate for a government with a $16 trillion debt.
Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn says misspending tax dollars in the name of security "weakens our already precarious economic condition."
Coburn's 54-page report outlines what he says is wasteful spending that he blames on lax oversight at Homeland Security and a willingness by Congress to overlook program problems in favor of making sure money gets to local areas.
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