Lavish GSA conference is a another reminder of taxpayer money wasted.
The national debt, as of Wednesday, was a record $15.64 trillion and climbing. The federal budget is bound for its fourth straight deficit of at least $1.29 trillion.
On that mammoth monetary scale, the $823,000 wasted by the General Services Administration on a free-spending bash at a Las Vegas area resort in October 2010 is chump change.
Yet with income-tax-filing day looming Monday, the spectacle of a federal agency spending $44 each on breakfasts, $6,325 on commemorative coins and $8,130 for “yearbooks” from a fun-filled “conference” is particularly galling.
So is the realization that GSA officials manage and rent property, and obtain equipment and services, for federal agencies.
GSA chief Martha Johnson has resigned over this scandal, accurately conceding that the agency needs “fresh leadership.”
Politicians in both parties have predictably expressed election-year outrage over the over-the-top party bill, with congressional hearings on this mess coming soon.
And the White House was quick to point out that the costs of the Western Regional Conference were already rising sharply under President George W. Bush. Then again, the biggest tab for that event under that administration was a mere $655,025 in 2008.
Clearly, however, there’s plenty of blame to go around — and plenty of taxpayer cash to be squandered.
No, eliminating lavish conferences by federal agencies wouldn’t balance the nation’s books.
But it might make doing your taxes a little less aggravating.