GAO report finds thousands of government workers on paid leave, costing taxpayers millions

WASHINGTON Thousands of federal workers who have been put on administrative leave for more than a month have been allowed to collect a paycheck, accrue vacation days and pensions benefits while taxpayers were forced to foot the $775 million bill, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office.

Some government employees who broke the rules meaning they were cited for being untrustworthy or had ongoing issues with co-workers or their bosses - were allowed to remain on leave for large chunks of time while they challenged their demotions, the 62-page report said.

The study, released publicly on Monday, marks the first time auditors have taken a look at the scope of administrative leave and its cost to taxpayers.