Federal Times Blogs
Last night, the Daily Show’s Jon Stewart weighed in on the General Services Administration’s conference spending scandal and zeroed in on what may be its most appalling angle: The sheer lameness of the crap GSA bought with $822,000 in taxpayer dollars. Said an outraged Stewart:
Canteens, clowns and bicycles? You’re in Vegas! Unless those canteens were filled with cocaine [...], you are a disgrace to corruption everywhere. I think I’m less upset about the waste of money than I am with the waste of opportunity.
[...] Yearbooks! They got yearbooks! The people in government known for efficiency and cost-cutting made sure they had physical evidence of the boondoggle they had in Vegas.
Stewart then shows a mock yearbook photo of former GSA Administrator Martha Johnson and dubbed her “Most likely to resign over an event that betrays an almost comical misunderstanding of the agency’s mission.”
The language, though bleeped, gets pretty salty at times, so be warned.
James Feynman Says:
April 8th, 2012 at 3:37 pm
The Senate sub-committee on travel of Federal employees is recommending a draft bill containing several innovations sure to alarm Federal employees and unions. Noting that total expenses for TDY, per diem, and other travel costs exceeded $1 billion in 2011 – for the first time – the new bill is intended to discourage travel as much as possible.
Per diem. Because Feds need to eat, no matter where they are, the bill proposes to pay for marginal expenses in this area. That is, the full per diem rate will, in all cases, be offset by $25 per day. This change alone is expected to reduce expenditures by approximately $75 million annually.
Lodging. Whenever possible, employees will be required to share rooms. To have a single room approved, the employee and his supervisor will be required to sign a form, certifying non-availability of other Federal employees.
In what will certainly be one of the most controversial moves, for any TDY where the trip is known at least 10 days in advance, and the trip is to an urban area of at least 100,000 population, the local travel office will be required to make arrangements for the employee to stay at available beds in hospitals, homeless shelters, or local jails (not prisons). As with the single-room waiver, a certification as to non-availability will be possible in justifiable circumstances.
Use of taxis and rental cars will still be allowed, but only in extraordinary, limited situations, such as in remote areas or after darkness. The details of this provision have yet to be worked out.
April 9th, 2012 at 8:21 am
Make arrangements to stay in a hospital, homeless shelter or jail? Seriously!!! And this would apply to the House and the Senate..right?
James Feynman Says:
April 9th, 2012 at 12:15 pm
My article was written tongue-in-cheek, to make you smile.
But like a lot of humor, there is an element of truth in it.
Fedline » The hits keep coming from GSA’s Vegas conference Says:
April 9th, 2012 at 1:45 pm
[...] rapping about becoming commissioner and blowing cash exploded last Thursday, even reaching the Daily Show. And today, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., released another video in which GSA employees sing about [...]