May 7 (UPI) -- Former NFL quarterback Brett Favre on Thursday repaid the state of Mississippi $500,000 of the $1.1 million he owed for speeches he never delivered and committed to paying the remainder in coming months.
Favre agreed to "repay the remainder in installments over the next few months," Mississippi State Auditor Shad White said in a statement.
The federally funded Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program provided officials $98 million over three years to help the state's poor, but nearly all of it was misused, the audit showed. Instead of being distributed to help the poor, the money was funneled to the Mississippi Community Education Center and the Family Resource Center of North Mississippi. These two nonprofit groups spent the money on advertising, lobbyists, expensive meals, airfare, luxury hotels, cars and Favre's no-show speeches.
"I want to applaud Mr. Favre for his good faith effort to make this right and make the taxpayers and TANF families whole," White said in a statement. "To date, we have seen no records indicating Mr. Favre knew that TANF was the program that served as the source of the money he was paid."
Favre said Wednesday in a Facebook post he had no idea he had been paid out of funds intended to be used for the poor.
"I have spent my entire career helping children through Favre 4 Hope donating nearly $10 million to underserved and underprivileged children in Mississippi and Wisconsin," he said in the post. "It has brought a ton of joy to my life, and I would certainly never do anything to take away from the children I have fought to help! I love Mississippi and I would never knowingly do anything to take away from those that need it most."