Report Details CDC SpendingCDC has spent millions of taxpayer dollars in "questionable" ways, such as $109.8 million for new headquarters in Atlanta, according to a report by Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs Financial Management Subcommittee, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. CDC has an annual budget of more than $8 billion.
Some of the questionable spending cited in the report includes $1.7 million, including some antiterrorism funds, for a Hollywood liaison program to get health messages into television and film, as well as new buildings in Atlanta that house a $200,000 fitness center, a giant wall of plasma screen televisions and a sculpture of a woman made out of vegetables. In addition, the report cites the use of tens of millions of dollars for programs ranging from HIV/AIDS prevention to bioterrorism preparation that lack adequate oversight.
Coburn in a statement on Monday said CDC does important work, but "like most agencies, it offers many examples of how an agency with a large budget can veer off track in prioritizing its funds." Tom Skinner, a CDC spokesperson, said, "We share Sen. Coburn's commitment to accountability, and we strive day in and day out to fulfill our commitment to the American taxpayer and to be diligent stewards" (Young, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 6/12).
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