-Michael Brune, Sierra ClubFederal law prohibits goverment agencies from dishing out more than $5,000 to "furnish, redecorate, purchase furniture for, or make improvements for the office of a presidential appointee during the period of appointment without prior notification to the appropriations committees of Congress".
Without advance notice to lawmakers, EPA obligated $43,239 from its fiscal 2017 environmental programs and management account to install the soundproof privacy booth in Pruitt's office, according to the GAO decision. The agency has long maintained a SCIF on a separate floor from the administrator's office, where officials with proper clearances can go to share information classified as secret.
GAO declined to comment on whether the soundproof booth, which was built out of a former storage closet in the administrator's office, was the most effective way to ensure private communications. The GAO does not have enforcement power, which means Congress or another federal agency must take action if there are to be any legal consequences for the EPA's violations. "It is critical that EPA and all federal agencies comply with notification requirements to Congress before spending tax payer dollars", Barrasso said.
Rep. Trey Gowdy, who is now investigating Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, had some harsh words for Pruitt's controversial travel habits.
Pruitt has defended his use of first-class travel by saying it was for security purposes. One of the hires, Sarah Greenwalt, also served as Pruitt's general counsel when he served as Oklahoma's attorney general.
In a so-called "government watchful", EPA inspector-general Arthur Elkins Jr. mentioned his staff had reviewed employees documents for 6 workers that had hired or had received raises underneath a provision of the Safe Drinking Water Act as Pruitt arrived to the agency last calendar year. Elkins said the interim alert was issued to notify Pruitt "of certain factual information".
In a April 4 meeting with Fox News, " Pruitt asserted he wasn't sure perhaps whoever authorized the raise turned into a career EPA worker or some political appointee. "Salary determinations are made to avoid disparities among positions of equivalent or similar responsibilities, to the extent possible". "Donald Trump shouldn't wait to see what ethical norm or law Pruitt breaks next".
The Government Accountability Office said in a report on Monday that the E.P.A. was required to notify Congress before spending more than $5,000 on office equipment or decorations. Foster was later reassigned and has filed a whistleblower complaint. "At any rate, I invited my wife in to come help me".