How did the yacht get paid for?

The Dom Post reports:

Former chief nurse Mark Jones will be asked to pay back $1250 after he chartered a yacht with Health Ministry money without approval.

Mr Jones resigned suddenly before Christmas after an investigation into his personal expenses.

The ministry will now investigate all expenditure against his budget after The Dominion Post revealed yesterday that spending may have included chartering a yacht during a meeting with Australian nurse executives in the Bay of Islands in December 2008.

Ministry deputy director-general Margie Apa confirmed those spending details yesterday.

“The ministry was concerned to learn … that a yacht may have been chartered using Health Ministry funds. Upon further investigation, it appears a yacht was chartered by former chief nurse Dr Mark Jones and paid for by the ministry.

“No prior approval was sought, or given by me or any other authorised person for this expenditure.”

The ministry would seek reimbursement of the $1250 charter fee, she said.

It is good that the chartering of the yacht by the Health Ministry was not authorised, but that does get me wondering how the bill got paid? Presumably Jones was authorised to approve expenditure up to a certain level, but you would think such an unusual item would be checked out and referred to someone higher up.

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