SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A state audit has found that a contractor improperly spent about $118,000 in taxpayer dollars that were meant for senior services.

The Albuquerque Journal reports the state audit released Thursday shows that the Non-Metro Area Agency on Aging spent the taxpayer dollars on fancy meals, alcohol, hotels and employee bonuses over a 2 1/2 period.

State Auditor Wayne Johnson said in a statement that the money was intended to feed and help low-income seniors.

Tim Armer, the executive director of the North Central New Mexico Economic Development District, which runs the agency, has denied that the spending was improper.

He says a staff team-building retreat in 2017 was paid for with non-taxpayer funds in an internal account and the bonuses were paid with savings from vacant positions and unused overtime.

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Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com