DOJ Report: Almost $500k in Gun “Buyback” Money in Philly Was Misused or Lost
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Gun “buybacks” (still a stupid term) have always been a terrible deal for taxpayers whenever government money is involved.
The programs do little to nothing to get guns out of the hands of criminals and result in good people being left unarmed.
However, in the case of one “buyback” program in Philadelphia, the taxpayers really took a hit. According to a DoJ audit, nearly $500,000 in funds meant to run the “Goods for Guns” program was either misused or outright lost.
According to NBC,
According to the audit, PSN’s Executive Director Raymond Jones, the organization’s sole employee, gave himself a $85,065 pay increase over a two year period. The increase brought his total salary to $287,565, which was higher than the organization’s board of directors approved, auditors say…
…In addition to the compensation, the audit says PSN spent $29,750 in rent on a building that was used once a month and did not properly account for $13,947 in utilities used.
Despite the allegations of misused funds, PSN did hold gun buyback events and collected 2,871 guns. However, the organization could not account for 280 gift cards which were not traded for a weapon…
All in all, 2,871 guns were “taken off the streets” (more like taken from attics and gun safes). Given the programs $800,000 budget, that results in a cost of ~$278.65 per gun. However, citizens who turned in their guns were only given a $100 grocery gift card.
We’ll be sure to keep an eye on violent crime in Philly to see how much the crime rate is reduced by this nearly $1,000,000 operation (my bet is on absolutely none).