Bustos: Secretary Carson’s Actions Reinforce Need for Better Accountability Laws

Bustos Introduced Legislation to Crack Down on Wasteful Cabinet Spending Earlier This Year

WASHINGTON – A report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) showed that Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson broke the law when he neglected to report an order for a more than $30,000 dining set and $8,000 dishwasher for his office. Earlier this year, Congresswoman Bustos introduced the bipartisan Reining In Irresponsible Decorating Expenses (RIIDE) Act to crack down on lavish spending by Cabinet officials and to increase transparency for taxpayers on renovation and redecorating expenses at federal agencies.

“Politicians and cabinet secretaries aren’t above the law – we ought to hold them to the highest ethical standards,” Congresswoman Bustos said. “Secretary Carson’s behavior was not only unethical, we now know it was illegal. That’s why we need to pass my legislation to crack down on this lavish spending and protect taxpayer dollars.”

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POLITICO: HUD’s Ben Carson broke law with furniture order, GAO says

  • Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson broke the law when he failed to report an order for a $31,561 dining room table set for his office as well as the installation of an $8,000 dishwasher in the office kitchen, the Government Accountability Office found in a report published Thursday.
  • Agencies are required to notify Congress of expenditures over $5,000 to furnish an executive’s office.
  • Congressional appropriators requested the GAO investigation.