Richard West, the founding director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian must repay $9,700 after spending "$250,000 in institution funds over the previous four years on premium transportation and plush lodging in hotels around the world, including more than a dozen trips to Paris" according to the Washington Post.
Interestingly, Senator Grassley "said in a statement that the Smithsonian governing board should consider demanding additional reimbursements from West. "Mr. West seemed to do whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. He traveled the world, stayed in fine hotels, personally kept honoraria even when he was speaking on Smithsonian business, and accepted and helped to arrange an elaborate send-off for himself."
I pretty much agree but would wonder where the board was the first couple of years this took place and why Mr. West wasn't reigned in then. Did he have that much "power" over the board that the board couldn't say no? Or maybe the board thought this was actually ok? Perhaps we will never learn the truth to the situation but are we really going to be that excited over a $9,700 repayment? I'm not thinking so.