NASA Credit Cards: Christmas Trees, t-shirts, and iPods

Review shows NASA employees bought seemingly personal items, AP

"Among the transactions questioned by NASA investigators last year were 393 charges to a graphics support vendor totaling more than $235,000 - so much money that not bidding the purchases competitively may have been illegal, documents show. "That should send up a red flag," said Scott Amey, general counsel of the Project on Government Oversight, a government watchdog organization. "You have to ask: Is somebody trying to get around competitive requirements?"

NASA employees big spenders on government credit, Houston Chronicle

"NASA employees have made numerous charges for seemingly personal items, including custom-engraved iPods and a Christmas tree. About $270 worth of T-shirts and hats purchased from a NASA gift shop were justified by one cardholder as "safety attire," and one former civil servant pleaded guilty to embezzlement charges last year after spending more than $157,000 on things including jewelry, electronics and an air conditioner for her home."

Report on NASA ignites call for credit card crackdown, Houston Chronicle

"Congressional supporters of a bill meant to curb government credit card abuse called Monday for stricter sanctions -- including termination and jail time -- against employees who misuse the cards at NASA, as well as other agencies."

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