DeKalb County District Attorney Robert James is reviewing the financial records of DeKalb Commissioner Elaine Boyer after recent news reports revealed that Boyer used her county credit card to make more than $12,000 in personal purchases.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution spent months investigating Boyer’s expenses and uncovered that she and her chief of staff, Robert Lundsten, spent thousands of taxpayer dollars on personal items, including $11,000 at restaurants, in 2012 and 2013. Boyer also used the card for airline tickets, Kroger and Wal-mart purchases among other things.
“We are aware of this and we are looking into the matter,” said the D.A.’s spokesman, Erik Burton.
Boyer said she apologized to the Board of Commissioners. She said she takes full responsibility for improperly using the card. She said she did not realize that she was not supposed to use the card for personal purchases, even though she has served as a commissioner for 20 years and signed an agreement stating the card was not for personal expenses. Boyer is longest-serving commissioner on the board.
Boyer said this week she has repaid the money in question. The repayment, however, does not mean that the District Attorney cannot pursue an indictment for criminal charges.
Burton said James is looking into financial records and other documents. Depending on his findings, the next step would be an indictment.
Commissioner Larry Johnson, who serves as presiding officer of the Board of Commissioners, said he wants to make sure that proper auditing procedures are put in place and that commissioners properly use their county credit cards.
“I want to make sure we do some refresher courses about the use of p cards for purchases,” Johnson said.
Boyer said she supports hiring an outside agency to conduct audits.
“I support hiring an outside accounting service to establish new protocols and procedures and give us the strongest financial safeguards in the state,” Boyer said in a statement released to On Common Ground News. “I will continue to handle taxpayer dollars in the most fiscally responsible manner possible, as my 20 years of public service clearly shows.”