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Hello everybody I'm Gerri Willis well remember the good old days when we thought that this guy was our biggest problem -- the General Services Administration.
Turns out the GSJ's misuse of taxpayer money goes far beyond Jeff mealy.
Record bonuses lavish conferences continue even after the top leadership resigned.
Congress grilling GSA officials again today on Capitol Hill Tom Schatz president of Citizens Against Government Waste says it's taxpayers who -- getting burned now.
He joins me Tom welcome to the show again.
Would you think -- hearing today in front of the transportation committee.
It's about time.
It's been going on for years congress has failed and its oversight responsibilities.
As someone finally caught on to what was happening in GSA -- -- one of the underlying problems with GSA is that.
They've been overcharging other agencies for their services for years 300 million dollars and kind of a slush fund over the last five years.
No wonder they're handing out more bonuses than any other agency in proportion to their size.
And throwing these lavish conferences -- How -- they get away with -- over charging it seems to me that.
Other agencies would one have been to be paying less money.
Well absolutely they create this multiple award schedule which is a pretty good service they're the buying office of the government so they.
Consolidate all the buying power and it.
Usually is a pretty good deal but then they charge a fee to the other agencies for that service they're only supposed to recover their costs that they've been.
Taking in an average of sixty million dollars extra.
Each year for the last five years.
And congress needs to change that formula and -- -- other well.
You know I really -- knew about this agency every single day.
And you said there at the buying agency for the federal government to -- this spending agency for the federal government.
I -- a lot of talk today about payment of bonuses.
As well as these conferences and we've focused on the cautious cop conference -- how how big they are how lavish they are.
But in fact I keep asking myself.
Why are they having all these conferences.
Well that's certainly -- point in other organizations where they -- is a financial problem and certainly the federal government is pretty much going broke.
One of the first places people start cutting back -- travel and conferences.
The Obama administration to its credit and its budget -- let's cut 10% congress wants to cut more.
GSA itself has cut back or so they say and yet they're still throwing this conference in Nashville it's -- Line and on and on and hide in that and the Nashville conference boy does this get me fired up.
At the grand Ole opry apparently there are thousands.
Employees there there was an interesting exchange today -- for the transportation committee that starts with that I want you to hear it.
Over 6000 now rounds at the Gaylord it it Nashville.
I understand the presidential suite is occupied today is -- TSA employee in the presidential suite.
I do not know it's over 3000 dollars a night.
You don't know I don't know after the president issued his executive -- we found out there were 77 more conferences around the nation.
I to question the taxpayer wants answered is.
Why are these agencies ignoring the president of the United States.
Not only that but they -- new management in place by the time most of this happen.
What's going on their watch it this is -- corporate this is a culture a government culture.
Again and I think the underlying reason is this sense of entitlement because they bring in all this extra money that congress cannot control.
Because it's based on charge from the other agencies for this service on the award schedule -- congress needs to change that formula.
They need to put into place in this spending bill for GSA.
Thank strict limit on conferences.
And make sure that they adhere to those limits.
Yeah we -- talking about bonuses before.
They had 44 million total bonuses.
In fiscal year 2011.
That is I believe 10% of all the bonuses.
There it -- the number of workers they have their workforce is just 1% of the entire federal government.
Completely out of whack why is it taken us so long to find this out and you know.
It would like this in these Republicans are all over this because it's a great campaign issue.
But what what -- front -- some of this stuff and fix it before it hits the headlines.
That's exactly the right question -- because congress has always.
Fail to perform sufficient oversight.
And there are multiple.
Agencies -- -- the same job.
-- duplication that could total almost 400 billion dollars a year the GAO has issued two big reports on duplication and overlap.
Congress has done nothing.
To change how any of those programs are administered or paid for so they are clearly.
At fault because they're in charge of the purse strings and the taxpayers money.
And they just don't get out front it's always after the fact though we're so sorry this happened herself.
And -- I get a vote for November because now it's a campaign -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- The the agency itself GSA is saying that they're reviewing all these bonuses.
The awards system that's been as so well publicized.
They're looking into this themselves hoping to make changes to it.
Could happen soon enough again Tom thanks so much for your time.
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