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Says Travel and Meetings Are Critical Tools for Efficient and Effective Government

Washington, D.C. – June, 4, 2013 - 

Following today's release of the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration's report on travel to a 2010 IRS conference, Roger Dow, president and CEO of the

U.S. Travel Association, released the following statement:"The IG report describes instances of inappropriate and wasteful spending on the part of IRS employees, who clearly went too far beyond the rules put in place to protect taxpayer dollars. Make no mistake – this behavior is both appalling and damaging. Yet it is incumbent on our leaders to not lose sight of the value that responsible travel and face-to-face meetings create for constituents. It is often the most efficient and effective way for government professionals to accomplish the requirements of their roles.

"Our experience in the private

sector suggests that cutbacks on business travel and meetings directly impact

company performance. According to a study conducted last year by Oxford Economics, of those

employees whose companies reduced business travel spending since 2007, only

four percent stated that these cutbacks helped company performance while 57

percent believe that reductions in business travel hurt their companies'

performance.

"When conducted responsibly,

government conferences, meetings and travel deliver important services to

businesses and individual taxpayers – including safety inspections, disaster

relief assistance, corporate training on taxes and government regulations,

services for the military and more.

"While Congress and the IG should do all they can to root out wasteful spending, let's not hamstring the

effectiveness of federal agencies in the process. We urge all parties to

exercise caution in responding to today's IG report."

About U.S. Travel Association

The U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $2.0 trillion in economic output and supports 14.6 million jobs. U.S. Travel's mission is to increase travel to and within the United States.

Contact: Cathy Keefe

ckeefe@ustravel.org / (202) 408-2183

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