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EXCLUSIVE: House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik and different best score member-level Republicans are in quest of duty from FBI Director Chris Wray over his use of a taxpayer-funded govt airplane to move him to his holiday house in New York.
Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., House Committee on Oversight and Reform score member James Comer, R-Ky., and House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence score member Mike Turner, R-Ohio, despatched the letter to Wray Monday.
“We write to conduct oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) use of Government aircraft and compliance with the applicable Federal regulations and requirements,” states the letter, first acquired by means of Fox News Digital. “We have questions about whether you are properly reimbursing federal taxpayers for your personal travel aboard government aircraft.”
During a Senate Judiciary Committee listening to with Wray final week, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, requested the FBI director to stick longer to reply to further questions. However, Wray departed the listening to and headed to his holiday house the use of the FBI’s Gulfstream 550 jet, which was once in the beginning meant to be used for counterintelligence operations.
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Grassley mentioned throughout the listening to: “We just heard a half hour ago about you having to leave at 1:30… Is there any reason we couldn’t accommodate them for 21 minutes?”
Wray spoke back to Grassley announcing, “Senator, I had a flight that I’m supposed to be high-tailing it to outta here, and I had understood that we were going to be done at 1:30, so that’s how we ended up where we are.”
The senator spoke back, asking if Wray may just keep the time beyond regulation and noting the director has a non-public airplane. Despite the ask, Wray departed from the listening to.
“You reportedly departed on the FBI’s Gulfstream 550 jet, an agency aircraft initially intended for counterterrorism use, to make the one hour and 12-minute journey to Saranac Lake. Further, it has been reported that you made a similar personal trip on a government aircraft on June 2 and June 5, 2022,” the House Republicans proceed of their letter.
“Although certain federal officials are permitted to use government aircraft for personal or political use, these expenses must be reimbursed. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), past FBI directors have used government aircraft for personal use as is permissible. These former officials reimbursed federal taxpayers at the commercial rate, which can be thousands of dollars less than the actual cost of operating the government aircraft. Reimbursement payments for personal travel are made to the FBI Finance Division, which in turn deposits the funds to the Department of the Treasury,” the letter states.
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) steering states that a central authority airplane is simplest approved for “official purposes” and would possibly simplest be approved out of doors authentic trip when no business air is to be had or would price extra.
The lawmakers are asking to obtain paperwork associated with Wray’s govt plane trip and an accounting of the price to taxpayers no later than Aug. 29.
According to the GAO, Wray can be required to make repayment bills for private trip to the FBI’s Finance Division, after which switch finances to the Treasury Department.
Travel on a central authority airplane should be documented and saved for 2 years, together with the flight manifest and path flown.
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The FBI didn’t in an instant reply to Fox News Digital’s request for remark at the letter.