National research labs paid former GOP Rep. Heather Wilson $422,000 in federal funds to engage in improper lobbying activities and other work, a Department of Energy report charges.
The use of DOE funds to lobby the government to increase lab funding is prohibited, according to the DOE's inspector general.
Wilson, who represented New Mexico's First Congressional District from 1998 to 2009, told the Albuquerque Journal
she did not lobby and the work she did complied with her contracts.
Wilson was paid more than $226,000 by Sandia National Laboratories, $196,000 from Los Alamos National Laboratories, and $30,000 by the Nevada National Security Site and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Sandia and Los Alamos have acknowledged their documentation of the work performed by Wilson was inadequate, the newspaper said.
They have agreed to reimburse the DOE for the payments, made with federal money.
The report said while Los Alamos and Sandia each paid Wilson a monthly $10,000 for consulting, they "did not receive evidence that work performed under the agreements had been completed."
"We also determined that contractor officials failed to exercise due diligence to ensure that the government received value for the payments made to" Wilson, the report says.
The Department of Energy did not return the Journal's request for comment on possible penalties.
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