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Audit critical of ND Game and Fish Department

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - An audit of North Dakota's Game and Fish Department found scores of discrepancies with the agency's practices, including improper payments to employees and more than 100 guns that are missing from a volunteer hunter education program.

The state auditor's office criticized the agency's misuse of public money. The audit and also found the agency in "noncompliance with laws, rules, and policies.''

Game and Fish Director Terry Steinwand says the agency was "stunned'' by the audit but corrective actions are being taken.

Game and Fish regulates hunting, fishing and trapping, manages land and promotes conservation. The agency receives no money from the state's general fund. It is supported by state licensing fees and federal tax money from the sale of firearms, ammunition and other sporting equipment.