PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The new chief of the embattled Philadelphia Housing Authority has ordered some staffers to return expensive designer duffel bags that they received from the fired former director, Carl Greene.

The interim executive director of the PHA, Michael Kelly, has sent staffers a memo asking anyone who received the Tumi designer bags to return them. The Daily News last week reported that Carl Greene had given the bags — valued at upwards of $800 — to high-ranking staffers, apparently using taxpayer dollars.

In his memo, the new director tells staffers he’s not judging them for having accepted the gifts, but that he wants to make a statement that they were not an appropriate use of PHA money. The staffers are being given the option to pay for the bags. And Kelly tells staffers that effective immediately, they are not to accept gifts of any kind related to their work.

A PHA spokeswoman said Kelly was traveling and was not available for comment. The PHA board meets later this afternoon, the first regular meeting since Kelly took over as executive director.

Reported by Mike Dunn, KYW Newsradio

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