[Ed. – Your tax dollars at work.]
A soundproof phone booth that EPA chief Scott Pruitt ordered for his office has actually cost the agency close to $43,000, according to a new report.
In addition to the cost of the $25,000 phone booth, the Washington Post reported Wednesday that preparations for the unit have cost about $18,000. That included removing television surveillance equipment and installing a drop ceiling.
The Post reported in September that the EPA would spend nearly $25,000to install a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) for Pruitt, despite there already being a SCIF in a separate area of the building.
It now reports that the additional expenses, found through a review of federal contracts, included $7,978 to remove closed circuit television equipment; $3,470 to pour a 55-square-foot, 2-foot-thick concrete slab; the installation of a drop ceiling at a cost of $3,361; and patching and painting work that cost $3,350. The records were found by the watchdog group American Oversight through a public records request, according to the Post.
EPA officials defended the booth, saying that it was necessary for Pruitt to have a secure area to communicate with the White House.