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Hit the Fed’s tip jar

Hit the Fed’s tip jar

From a reader known to me but who asked to stay anonymous:

Not even sure what kind of subject line to give this one:

One of the pieces of our business involves providing media research to the general public. We strive to provide a very affordable service using the latest toys and technology… not an easy trick.

Last week, we got a request from the local branch of the Federal Reserve to review and document a recent PR event they held. I quoted them a total price under $250 including delivery and sent them the work order for approval. We finally heard back this morning. They cancelled the order – “They just can’t afford it right now”.

Don’t get me wrong – I completely understand and respect a client that is conscientious about observing a budget, but when the Federal Reserve tells you they can’t afford something it’s time to start worrying.

You’re welcome to use that story – please withhold name and city – several of my clients read your blog!

And I’ve got to get back to work – I have a $250 shortfall in this week’s budget to make up before the end of the day.


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Ninety-five high-ranking employees at the General Services Administration who are assigned to work from home racked up $750,000 in travel expenses over nine months, documents show, prompting concerns from agency officials but no action to curtail the expenses.

The travel records, provided by the agency to congressional committees, provide fresh evidence of a spending culture at GSA’s Public Buildings Service that led to an embarrassing scandal this spring over a conference off the Las Vegas strip.

The former executive at the center of that event, the 2010 Western Regions conference, authorized $823,000 for a four-day event for 300 employees that featured far more entertainment than work.

Even the executive, Jeffrey Neely, was surprised to learn of the travel expenses for the 95 employees who work from their homes, according to e-mails and other documents provided to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which oversees the federal workforce.

“OMG,” Neely wrote in an e-mail last October to a colleague, Regional Commissioner Robin Graf, who had sent a spreadsheet to several managers with a breakdown of the travel reimbursement costs for “virtual” employees. She expressed concern about a lack of oversight of these employees.

“100 virtuals and most of them with some pretty serious grades,” Neely wrote, referring to the employees’ General Schedule status. “[W]ell this is a fine mess we’ve gotten ourselves into.”

Somehow, I find it hard to work up the necessary urge to contribute, Prof…

    I think we have been hitting the Fed’s tip jar too much!

    GrumpyOne in reply to Ragspierre. | June 2, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    As a retired process engineer millions of dollars for various employers, I can state an easy fix for GSA… Eliminate the entire agency! Let the tenants pick up responsibility for their building maintenance and services. If 30% or more in savings could not be realized, I would gladly submit to public humiliation and pillory.

    I never encountered a public agency where at least that much in the way of savings could not be achieved with very little effort.

    And, I might add that similar opportunities in the private sector also existed but in lesser amounts.

    This country does not need a president, it needs a fiscal dictator for about eight years…

Let’s see, they have $87 trillion dollars loaned to Europe, $76 trillion loaned to the US government, own a pile of stock in Freddie and Fannie, hold a controlling interesting in 1/4 of the real estate in the USA but they can’t find $250 to do some actual work?

Sounds to me like we need a GOSH DARN AUDIT!

(With apologies for my language…)

TrooperJohnSmith | June 2, 2012 at 10:31 am

Unlike the Feral [sic] Government, he cannot simply borrow the $250 from China or print it up on his HP LaserJet, borrow it from himself and stick his grand-kids with the bill.

PrincetonAl | June 2, 2012 at 11:18 am

I have a tip for the Fed.

Fire your staff, and then prepare to return to the gold standard.

hehe video document the event?

Total Absorption -The Movie

Maybe we can borrow a couple of hundred bucks from the secret Pakistan stash.

A very entertaining and informative video-

designed to hold your attention while explaining our complicated banking system to lay persons/ young people.

LukeHandCool | June 2, 2012 at 12:09 pm

I wonder if the person who sent the notice of cancellation because the Federal Reserve couldn’t afford the $250 chuckled a bit while he was writing it?

    WarEagle82 in reply to LukeHandCool. | June 2, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    No, they were probably in a rush to catch the charter plane to the week-long, Federal Reserve seminar in Tahiti…