The Office of the Inspector General has been investigating a meeting hosted by the Public Buildings Service, a subgroup of the General Services Administration, that was held near Las Vegas in 2010. The meeting cost taxpayers approximately $835,000, and the report released by the Office of the Inspector General reveals that officials at the Public Buildings Service not only knew about the expense of the trip beforehand, but joked about it as well.
The conference was hosted at a luxury hotel, and featured a $3,200 mindreader, $6,300 worth of commemorative coin sets, and a $75,000 training exercise where attendees tried to build a bicycle. Additionally, the airfare and lodging cost roughly $147,000.
Officials at the Public Buildings Service were captured on camera laughing about the expense of the summit’s “capstone” event in October of 2010. Fox News reports, “One official joked about how much was spent at a party hosted by the agency’s commissioner. Another employee, in a mock music video, even sang about how he’d “never be under OIG investigation.”
In that video, an employee is pretending to be performing in a fake music video, which includes jokes that only his colleagues would understand.
The employee sings: “Donate my vacation, love to the nation, I’ll never be under OIG investigation.”
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee posted online that video of the employees at the General Services Administration.
The employee in the video was later given an award at the conference and named “commissioner for a day.” In the award speech, an official identified as Public Buildings Service Deputy Commissioner David Foley joked that “there’s just a couple of small matters. The hotel would like to talk to you about paying for the party that was held in the commissioner’s suite last night,” he said, to laughter from the crowd.