Congressman John L. Mica, Chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, reports to Historic City News that he has uncovered evidence that US General Services Administration officials flew to Hawaii on taxpayer-funded junkets, sometimes for a week or more, just for brief federal building ribbon-cutting ceremonies.
Mica revealed information from a GSA Inspector General investigation that he says identifies examples of the agency blowing hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on a lavish conference in Las Vegas, on giving themselves iPods, electronics and gift cards, and on cash bonuses.
According to Inspector General’s office, from an interview conducted with a GSA employee, several GSA officials flew to Hawaii for five to seven days in 2011 in order to attend an hour-long ribbon cutting on space leased by the federal government.
The employee interviewed stated this was not an isolated incident, and referenced another, longer scheduled trip to Hawaii that had not yet occurred.
“The Las Vegas conference was the tip of the iceberg,” Mica told reporters. “Every new example demonstrates the mind-boggling culture of waste and blatant disregard for the taxpayers’ money within the General Services Administration.”
Mica and Congressman Jeff Denham will lead a Congressional oversight hearing entitled “GSA’s Squandering of Taxpayer Dollars: A Pattern of Mismanagement, Excess and Waste” at 8:30 a.m. next Tuesday, April 17, 2012 in 2167 Rayburn House Office Building.