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GSA Official Who Organized $800K Vegas Conference Was Credited for Cost-Saving Courthouse Goats

Posted Apr 18, 2012 5:30 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The General Services Administration official who organized a Las Vegas conference that cost $800,000 asserted his Fifth Amendment rights more than five times at a congressional hearing Monday.

But Jeffrey E. Neely wasn’t always so reluctant to talk. In a press release last December, he was credited for using a herd of goats to clear growth near a federal courthouse in Pasadena, Calif., the Washington Post reported earlier this month. The goats are much less costly than manual labor, according to the GSA.

Neely said in the press release that nearby neighbors “were tickled and impressed with the idea.”

CNN and the Washington Post have reports on Neely’s assertion of the Fifth Amendment on Monday. According to the Los Angeles Times, testimony revealed that Neely was supervised only by a senior counsel at the agency.

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