REPORT: Zinke Spent $139,000 On Office Doors

The Associated Press reports:

Records show the Interior Department spent nearly $139,000 last year for construction at the agency that was labeled on a work order as “Secretary’s Door.” A spokeswoman for Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke did not provide answers Thursday to questions about whether changes had been made to a door in the secretary’s office.

Records show the Maryland contractor that performed the work, Conquest Solutions LLC, has done several renovation projects at federal buildings. A man who answered the phone at the company Thursday hung up when a reporter asked about Zinke’s office.

MarketWatch reports:

According to records posted online, the project — described as “Secretary’s Door” — cost $138,670, and are to carried out by a Maryland company called Conquest Solutions. The company’s website says it specializes in building automation systems. According to government records, Conquest Solutions was the only company to bid for the job.

A spokeswoman for Zinke said that the cost of the doors was news to her, and the work was requested by career staffers as part of a building modernization effort. While she said the price sounded high, she said historic preservation requirements and new locks raised the cost

CNN reports:

Zinke was unaware of the expense for the doors, Interior spokeswoman Heather Swift said, saying the project was driven by “career facilities and security officials” as part of a decade-long modernization of the 1930s building.

“The secretary was not aware of this contract but agrees that this is a lot of money for demo, install, materials, and labor,” Swift said in a statement.

“Between regulations that require historic preservation and outdated government procurement rules, the costs for everything from pencils to printing to doors is astronomical. This is a perfect example of why the secretary believes we need to reform procurement processes.”