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House panel expected to approve 30 percent cut to federal travel

Jun. 26, 2012 - 12:20PM   |  
By ANDY MEDICI   |   Comments
Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill.
Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill. (File photo / Getty Images)

A House committee is expected to approve a bill Wednesday that would cut federal travel spending by 30 percent from 2010 levels.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will vote on a revised version of the Government Spending Accountability Act by Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill. The bill would require each agency to file quarterly itemized reports on conferences costing more than $100,000 and limit spending on a single conference to $500,000. The substitute version of the bill that the committee will consider includes a provision to cut travel spending in 2013 at each agency by 30 percent from 2010 levels and to keep those cuts in place through 2017, according to Ali Ahmad, spokesman for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

Each agency would be required to justify the cost and location of each conference, including a cost-benefit analysis for why the agency did not conduct a teleconference.

The bill would also:

• Limit the number of federal employees from one agency allowed to attend an international conference to 50 or fewer.

• Require agencies to post online any text or any visual aid delivered by a federal employee during the conference.

• Require agencies to describe any financial support from any private entity that helped pay for the conference and an explanation for why the conference helped advance the agency’s mission.

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