Today, Congressman Mike Michaud joined his fellow colleagues on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management to hold a hearing on the General Services Administration's (GSA) waste of taxpayer dollars on a lavish conference as well as other incidents of waste and abuse of taxpayer dollars.
"I was appalled when I first heard about some of the things that GSA charged to taxpayers," said Michaud, a senior member of the subcommittee. "Many of these expenses were in violation of rules designed to help small businesses and prevent excessive spending. In fact, according to the Inspector General's report, those planning the conference were told to "make it over the top,' and several suggestions to minimize expenses were ignored."
At the hearing, Michaud urged GSA's Inspector General to broaden its investigation into other conferences that took place in the past so that all issues of waste could be fully addressed. He also announced that he plans to offer an amendment to the Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill to prevent GSA from holding these types of conferences in the future.
"This Congress has had its share of disagreements over the best way to reduce federal spending and the deficit. However, I think we can all agree that there is no place for this kind of excess," said Michaud. "The employees that put together this conference forgot that the federal government is supposed to work on behalf of the taxpayer. Families and small businesses throughout Maine should not have to pay for employees of the GSA to take lavish vacations in Las Vegas."