Federal Trade Commission Spending Heavily on Travel to Nations Outside Its Jurisdiction

Wednesday, July 06, 2011
Primarily responsible for combating unfair trade practices within the United States, the Federal Trade Commission has spent 30% of its travel budget in recent years on foreign excursions.
Over a three-year period, FTC employees and commissioners took 718 international trips to nearly 120 destinations, according to records obtained by Junket Sleuth. The most common destination was Paris, France (62 trips), followed by Brussels, Belgium (47), home of the European Union’s headquarters. Other travel spots included popular tourist locations like Aruba in the Caribbean and the South Korean island of Cheju.
From 2007 to 2009, overall travel spending by the FTC went up nearly 30%, from $1.7 million $2.2 million. During this period, the number of employees increased only 2.3%, from 1,095 to 1,120.
The most expensive trips by FTC employees ranged in price from $7,252 to South Africa to $13,138 to India.
Commissioner William Kovacic, who some FTC staffers dubbed “Commissioner Magellan” for his globe-trotting ways, averaged 100 days of travel per year from his appointment in January 2006 to mid-2009. In 2009, he spent time in Taiwan, Rome, and London, and celebrated July 4th in China at a conference on competition law.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
Where in the World Are the Federal Trade Commissioners? (by Stephanie Mencimer, Mother Jones)


Leave a comment