Veterans Benefits Administration--Refreshments for Focus Groups
B-304718, Nov 9, 2005
To fulfill its statutory mission, the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department of Veterans Affairs, conducts focus groups in which veterans and their families participate. VBA asks whether it may use appropriate funds to pay for incentives in the form of refreshments or light meals to increase participation in and the effectiveness of focus groups. VBA may reasonably determine administratively that providing such incentives encourages participation in and improves the quality of information gleaned from focus groups, and accordingly may use appropriated funds to pay for such incentives. VBA should provide incentives pursuant to an enforceable policy that ensures incentives are provided only when necessary and appropriate.