OPM Director John Berry

OPM Director John Berry OPM photo

OPM cracks down after CFC audit

Charitable donations can’t be spent on meals, entertainment or travel, agency orders.

The Office of Personnel Management has prohibited spending Combined Federal Campaign donations on meals, entertainment or travel the Federal Times reported.

The move follows an audit of the Washington-area CFC, where OPM’s inspector general found more than $300,000 in questionable expenses.

"Effective immediately, [local federal coordinating committees] are instructed not to approve, and [principal combined fund organizations] are directed not to incur, any expenses for food, beverages or entertainment, and no such expenses are to be charged against the proceeds of the campaign," OPM Director John Berry wrote.

In addition to the new rule, OPM ordered Global Impact, the company managing the Washington-area CFC, to repay $309,820 in questionable expenses so the money can be distributed to charities. While Global Impact says the money has been repaid, the president of the organization, Renee Acosta, said the organization will try to appeal the decision.

OPM also will set up a new task force, led by the watchdog Charity Navigator, to further review Global Impact’s finances.

"As the federal agency responsible for overseeing the CFC across the nation and around the world, OPM is committed to ensuring that charitable contributions made by federal employees and service members are properly administered, with the maximum amount reaching charities," Berry said in a statement. "Any failure to abide by OPM regulations regarding the handling of charitable contributions is unacceptable."