ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) -- It was December of 2018 when the Fulton County commissioners voted to more than triple their travel and training spending accounts.

Since then, the commission chair says some expenses have become "ridiculous." Two commissioners who called for the increase ended up spending the most last year.

Commissioner Natalie Hall of District 4 shelled out a whopping $44,468.67 on her travel card for her and her staff. It raised the eyebrows of chairman Robb Pitts.

"Some of the personal expenses don't make any sense to me," he said Wednesday to the CBS46 Bulldog.

"Thats really an excessive number. There is no reason for it," added Commissioner Bob Ellis. He proposed an ordinance to cut the annual commissioner allowance of $50,000 back down to $13,000.

"People don't need $50,000 a year to educate themselves," said Ellis.

Commissioner Hall pushed back against the decrease and efforts to cap staff salaries, saying, "I pay them what they are worth. I want them to continue to work for me."

When asked what is keeping her or other commissioners from abusing funds she said, "I would hope we all have the sense not to do that."

Ellis added,"I don't think you should trust someone to give them an unlimited checkbook."

The commissioners as a whole spent nearly $50,000 more on travel in 2019 than they had the previous year.

Examples of trips being questioned include staff outings to Las Vegas, Los Angeles and attending an awards show.

Copyright 2019 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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