GOP Rep. Says Questionable Public Lands Spending Deserves Vetting

Steve Handy 02Rep. Steve Handy, R-Layton, says there needs to be a full accounting of the money spent by the law firm hired to help the state explore taking control of public lands from the federal government.

 
 
“It’s disconcerting,” said Handy. “It doesn’t pass the smell test.”
 
Handy has long been a supporter of the movement to transfer public lands. 
 
The Campaign for Accountability, a Washington, D.C. based advocacy group, alleges invoices submitted to Utah by the law group show taxpayers are being asked to pay for expenses that are beyond the scope of what they were hired for.
 
Handy says the allegations are serious enough that they deserve a serious investigation.
 
“Let’s audit this. Let’s find out. If there are these kinds of things happening, they need to pay it back.”
 
Handy says the controversy is an unneeded distraction from the real issue over control of public lands.
 
“The movement didn’t need this,” he exclaimed. “This won’t go away, and we need to get to the bottom of it.”
 
The state has paid approximately $900,000 so far to the Davillier firm.