Inquiry Regarding Senate Recording and Photographic Studios

B-203087: Published: Jul 7, 1981. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 1981.

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An inquiry was made as to whether there was sufficient authority to invest excess funds of the Senate Recording and Photographic Studios in short-term certificates of deposits and whether the earnings from the investments could be used to pay salaries of one or more Studio employees. Legislation is required to implement this proposal. A revolving fund was established within the contingency fund of the Senate for administering the duties of the Studios. The revolving fund is replenished from moneys received by the Studios for disk, film, and tape recordings and from other sources. Salaries of Studio employees are paid from funds appropriated in the various legislative branch appropriation acts. All public moneys must be deposited into the Treasury of the United States. However, revolving funds are appropriations and, accordingly, the legal principles applicable to appropriations would apply to revolving funds. Investment of revolving funds would contravene regulations which require that appropriated funds must be applied solely to the objects for which they are made. If desired, legislation authorizing the investment of fund income could provide for the payment of salaries of Studio employees from revolving fund monies.

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