What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas…Unless You Take Pictures in a Bathtub
It would appear that the excess spending of taxpayer dollars in Sin City and prison time are synonymous.
Former senior General Services Administration (GSA) official, Jeffrey Neely, was sentenced to three months in prison earlier last week for claiming fraudulent expenses of over $8,000 while on “scouting trips.”
To the average American, scouting trips may not last five days in Las Vegas and usually would not consist of $7,000 sushi receptions, a $3,200 mind reader and gourmet breakfasts ringing in at $44 per head. But, if you’re Jeff Neely and get the privilege of taxpayers funding these amenities, these luxuries are only the beginning of the perks you see while on the job.
GSA employees five day trip to Sin City cost taxpayers well over $800,000. Taxpayers may be less than thrilled to discover their money funded such ridiculous and obscure items including clown suits, bicycles- for team building exercises, of course- cheese displays, and numerous meals that violated the federal governments $71 a day meal regulations.
After a photo of Neely enjoying wine and bathing went viral in 2012, Neely found himself in hot water- quite literally- and became the face of excess spending in government corporations at taxpayers expense. A month later Neely pled guilty before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on just one count of submitting a false money claim, admitting that he billed GSA for his stay in an extravagant Las Vegas hotel though he was not conducting official business during his stay.
While prosecutor’s pushed for a six-month prison stay, Neely will serve three months and face $8,000 in restitution and $2,000 in fines and probation. Acting Inspector General Robert C. Erickson has officially closed the case “about a GSA executive abusing his position and wasting taxpayer dollars.” Hopefully, this is only the beginning of the crackdown on government agencies throwing taxpayer dollars to waste.