The General Services Administration is once again in the spotlight for apparently lavish spending at an agency event.
The GSA Inspector General is investigating an awards ceremony for GSA employees in 2010 that cost $268,732. According to preliminary findings, the event was held at the Crystal City Marriott in Arlington, Va., and officials spent more than $35,000 for 4,000 "time temperature picture frames," $20,000 for catering charges as well as paying for a violinist and guitarist.
Brian Miller, the procurement agency’s IG, informed the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee July 19 of his preliminary findings, provoking the anger of some committee members.
“GSA’s pattern of waste and abuse continues,” Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.), chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said July 19.
However, “instead of clowns and mind readers, we’ve got violinists and guitarists. GSA has really classed up their act,” said Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.), chairman of the committee’s Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management Subcommittee.
Denham has called for closing down GSA in the past.
A GSA spokesperson said on July 24 that the awards ceremony has been happening annually since 2002, but GSA's new leader will put a stop to it.There are a number of Internet sites where government employees and ordinary citizens can report government waste and abuse: