How else did the General Services Administration spend taxpayers' money besides an extravagant $823,000 employee “retreat” that took place in 2010? Plenty of people are poring over GSA Inspector General Brian D. Miller’s April 2 report, which led to the congressional hearings taking place this week.
Aside from the fact that the GSA paid the housing expenses of Royal Productions employees twice (they were the vendor that supplied audio visual services); and that GSA “impermissibly purchased food for non-employees” – here are a few other specifics:
Travel expenses and catering costs for eight different trips that GSA staff people made to both Las Vegas and Denver, including one trip where five employees visited nine different Vegas-area hotels
Amount spent on team-building exercises that included building bicycles (the finished bicycles were later donated to a local Boys and Girls Club)
Cost of “audio-visual services”
The “networking reception” included 400 pieces of $4.75 “Petit Beef Wellington,” 400 “Mini Monte Cristo Sandwiches” ($5.00 each), 1,000 sushi rolls ($7 each), and 225 units of a $16-per-person “Pasta Reception Station”
Amount spent on cocktail reception and award dinner
Cost of conference souvenir books and yearbooks
The now infamous commemorative coins in velvet boxes that were given to all participants
Amount spent on three semi-private in-room parties
T-shirts given to conference attendees
What the mind reader charged.
Water bottles for the growing "goody bag."
A private hospitality-suite party on the third night of the conference
Vests for 19 “regional ambassadors” and other employees
Cost of rented tuxes for three officials
Cost per attendee for daily breakfast