Certificated Expenditures: Executive Office of the President FY 2018 Certificated Expenditures Were Spent for Authorized Purposes

GAO-20-139R Published: Nov 14, 2019. Publicly Released: Nov 14, 2019.
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Fast Facts

The President and Vice President of the United States are legally allowed to spend funds for certain specified purposes (e.g., official travel, residential maintenance, entertainment) and account for them solely with their official certificates.

We examined these ‚Äúcertificated expenditures‚ÄĚ for FY 2018 and determined that they were spent for the purposes authorized under the relevant law.

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Highlights

What GAO Found

For fiscal year 2018, the President of the United States under 3 U.S.C. 105(d)(1), (3), and (5) certificated $12,807,305 of expenditures, and the Vice President of the United States under 3 U.S.C. 106(b)(2) and (3) certificated $66,682 of expenditures. These amounts were reflected in the underlying accounting records and attested to by the Chief Financial Officer of the Executive Office of the President. GAO found no exceptions in the expenditures tested and therefore concluded that the fiscal year 2018 expenditures certificated (officially documented) by the President and Vice President were spent for the purposes authorized under 3 U.S.C. 105(d) and 106(b), as applicable. The Executive Office of the President had no comments on the report. GAO is not making any recommendations.

Why GAO Did This Study

Pursuant to 3 U.S.C. 105(d) and 106(b), GAO inspected and verified certificated (officially documented) expenditures from fiscal year 2018 appropriations of the President of the United States and the Vice President of the United States. These sections authorize the President and the Vice President to expend appropriated funds for certain specified purposes that may be accounted for solely on their certificates and as they determine, notwithstanding the provisions of any other law. Specifically, the President is authorized to expend appropriated funds for the care, maintenance, repair, alteration, refurnishing, improvement, air-conditioning, heating, and lighting (including electric power and fixtures) of the Executive Residence at the White House. Further, the President and the Vice President are authorized to expend appropriated funds for official entertainment expenses of the President and the Vice President and for subsistence expenses of persons in the government service while traveling on official business in connection with the travel of the President and of the Vice President. Sections 105(d) and 106(b) also authorize GAO to examine records related to these expenditures to verify that all such expenditures related to purposes specified in those sections and to report to Congress its verification and any amounts not expended for the specified purposes.

To meet this objective, GAO selected statistical samples of certificated expenditures of the President and Vice President and verified these expenditures against the underlying supporting documentation in the Executive Office of the President's accounting records. GAO is not making any recommendations.

For more information, contact Cheryl Clark at 202-512-3406 or clarkce@gao.gov.

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