The Interior Department is shelling out almost $139,000 for new doors in the office of Secretary Ryan Zinke — the latest example of lavish spending in the Trump administration.
Zinke was unaware of the contract for the upgrade of three sets of double doors prior to a request about it from the Associated Press, spokeswoman Heather Swift said.
The project was planned by facilities and security officials as part of the 10-year-long modernization of the 1936 building a few blocks from the White House, she said.
“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 Thursday 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“Between regulations that require historic preservation and outdated government procurement rules, the costs for everything from pencils to printing to doors is astronomical.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.”
The current door from a hallway to Zinke’s sixth-floor office does not lock, so a security upgrade is needed, Swift said.
An order for the $138,670 job at the department was listed on an online government procurement database as being completed in November, amended with the note “Secretary’s Door.”
Swift said the dates listed online are incorrect and that the doors have not yet been fixed. Design work on the project was approved last month and installation is expected in the summer.
Records show the Maryland contractor hired for the job, Conquest Solutions LLC, has performed multiple renovations at federal buildings.
A man who answered the phone at the company Thursday hung up when asked about Zinke’s office.
An Interior Department official said the work includes two doors that open onto a corner balcony with a spectacular view of the Washington Monument and the National Mall.
A third opens to a hallway that features portraits of previous Interior secretaries.
The project has been planned for almost two years.
Zinke, who took office in March 2017, spent $53,000 on three helicopter trips last year, including one that allowed him to go on a horseback ride with Vice President Mike Pence.
Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was forced to resign in September amid media reports he spent at least $400,000 in taxpayer funds on private jets for himself and his staff.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt spent $25,000 on a soundproof booth in his office to prevent eavesdropping on his phone calls. Another $9,000 was spent for biometric locks.
And Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson came under fire last month after reports his agency was spending $31,000 for a new dining set. HUD later canceled the order.