The FBI avoided reporting 395 non-mission critical flights by top Justice Department officials to General Services Administration as mandated by executive branch requirements, a report released 20 March by the Government Accountability Office said. The failing, however, falls on the GSA which allows intelligence agencies to avoid reporting unclassified, non-mission trips on governments aircraft.
The report reguested by Sen. Charles Crassley (R-lowa) said “the exemption has never been justified and conflicts with executive branch rules”
“This could undermine the purposes of these requirements, which include alding in the oversight of the use of government aircraft and helping to ensure that government aircraft are not used for nongovernmental purposes”, the report said.
The GSA requires agencies to give a listing of flights by top officieals that aren´t required to fulfill the agency´s mission. Those flights are then included in a public database, which the report reveals is incomplete. Fedral regulations say that commercial travel should be used when possible to avoid an unnecessary burden on taxpayers.
Travelers are supposed to reimburse the government when flying government owned or chartered aircraft for non-mission purposes. According to the GAO, flights to give speeches, attend conferences and make routine site visits are considered non-mission travel.
By Jeffrey Benzing Marsch 20th 2014. FBI Avoided Reporting 395 Flights By Officials Via Improper GSA Exemption, GAO Report Says.
The report was published Feb. 28 but was not available to the public until now.