Updated:ORLANDO, Fla. —
Leaders of the troubled job agency Workforce Central Florida met Monday to discuss how to pay back big money spent on questionable items.
Channel 9 was first to report problems at the agency, and WFTV’s Bianca Castro asked if paying back the money will hurt people looking for work.
Sergio Amaro has been looking for a job for seven months, and he said time is running out.
“Just trying to get that going and basically get on my feet at a steady pace before my baby comes,” said Amaro.
But the federally funded group Amaro is hoping to get help from is still facing problems of its own. Several reports have found $800,000 in inappropriate expenses were made before Gov. Rick Scott overhauled the agency.
Now, the new leaders are working with the state to figure out exactly how much they have to pay back.
“We really still are in the review stages, and obviously, would not be paid back with federal money,” said Workforce Central Florida President and CEO Pamela Nabors.
Instead, the money would likely come from taxpayers in the counties the agency serves: Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter and Lake counties.
WFTV also learned the agency is creating a new position to make sure the agency's spending stays in compliance. The position is in addition to the current CFO position and a finance department of at least seven.
Nabors said the new job is part of the reorganization.
Leaders insist that training programs and services at their area job centers will not be cut, which is good news for Amaro.
“In a situation like this, you have to have hope,” said Amaro.