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2:24 pm, August 29, 2014

Oversight News

IRS struggling to tackle massive surge in identity theft

Faced with declining resources, the Internal Revenue Service has diverted resources from elsewhere inside the agency to try and head off skyrocketing cases of identity theft stemming from tax refunds.

Friday - 11/30/2012, 06:16pm EST
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Senate votes to require DHS clean audit by 2013

The Homeland Security Department would be required to conduct and pass a full financial audit under a bill unanimously approved by the Senate on Wednesday. The DART Act requires the agency, long characterized by the Government Accountability Office as being at high-risk for waste and abuse, to reach a clean audit opinion by 2013.

Thursday - 11/29/2012, 06:49pm EST

House panel promises more aggressive VA oversight

The House Veterans' Affairs Committee warned the VA Wednesday to expect much more aggressive oversight in the coming months as lawmakers review the department's conference and travel spending.

Wednesday - 11/28/2012, 05:37pm EST

President signs whistle-blower bill for US workers

President Barack Obama signed legislation Tuesday that affords greater protection to federal employees who expose fraud, waste and abuse in government operations.

Tuesday - 11/27/2012, 08:11pm EST

Committee leadership changes likely after election

The election Tuesday could bring with it a number of changes to the makeup and leadership of key congressional committees with oversight of the federal workforce and management. The changes to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and others are expected from retirements, committee term limits and a few close races.

Monday - 11/05/2012, 06:14pm EST
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House Republicans blast OIRA over late regulations report

The chairmen of the House Oversight and Judiciary committees have written to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) demanding to know why the public release of a report on upcoming federal regulations is behind schedule. In a letter to the agency, Reps. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the chairmen of the Oversight and Government Reform and Judiciary committees, respectively, say OIRA has not been forthcoming about the expected publication date of a report that should have been released months ago.

Friday - 10/26/2012, 01:30pm EDT

Energy Department missing big opportunity to cut travel costs

An inspector general report found that while the Energy Department "moved swiftly" to reduce travel spending by its employees following a White House directive, it omitted a sizable chunk of its workforce from those efforts: contractors. The IG recommended the agency take steps to reduce contractors' foreign travel spending. Because contractors greatly outnumber federal employees at DoE and make up the lion's share of foreign travel, they should be included in cost-reduction efforts, the IG said.

Wednesday - 10/24/2012, 07:38pm EDT

Report: Safety systems for Afghan IEDs inadequate

The watchdog for spending in Afghanistan is warning commanders that a safety system to protect U.S. troops from roadside bombs is incomplete or inadequate.

Thursday - 10/11/2012, 11:28am EDT

Collins wants to know why VA conference planners received bonuses

In an Oct. 9 letter to VA Secretary Eric Shinskei, Sen. Susan Collins requested the agency disclose whether employees responsible for planning the two conferences held in Orlando, Fla., last summer, also worked on other conferences. In addition, Collins said she wants to know how much conference planners earned in bonuses and other awards for their work.

Wednesday - 10/10/2012, 07:09pm EDT

Republican lawmakers call for ouster of VA official who approved conferences

Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, and Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), the ranking member of the Senate committee, called on VA Secretary Eric Shinseki to fire his chief of staff, John Gingrich after an inspector general report said he failed to ask the right questions before approving two training conferences. The conferences costs $6.1 million, with as much as $762,000 in questionable spending.

Tuesday - 10/09/2012, 06:35pm EDT
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Failed leadership blamed for VA conference spending scandal

Two Veterans Affairs Department training conferences held last summer in Orlando, Fla., contained as much as $762,000 in wasteful spending and were plagued by poor planning and oversight, according to an inspector general report released Monday.

Monday - 10/01/2012, 05:25pm EDT
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Federal agencies owe $14 million in unpaid taxes

The $14 million owed to the U.S. treasury comes from money withheld from federal employees' paychecks that was never turned over to the IRS, according to a new audit from the Treasury Inspector General For Tax Administration. The audit also reviewed whether the IRS made recommended changes following a similar audit five years ago.

Thursday - 09/27/2012, 02:02pm EDT

With $104M whistleblower payout, IRS hoping money talks

Providing awards to whistleblowers is key to bringing would-be informants forward. And a record $104 million after taxes payout to former UBS banker Bradley Birkenfeld serves as a billboard to whistleblowers that the IRS is willing to pay out for information that helps catch tax cheaters.

Monday - 09/24/2012, 02:30pm EDT
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Agencies cracking down on troubled vendors

The Interagency Suspension and Debarment Committee (ISDC) issued its annual report to Congress showing that the use of suspension and debarment increased substantially in 2011 over 2009 and 2010.

Tuesday - 09/18/2012, 07:35pm EDT

Tangherlini sought details of GSA IG's investigation tactics

The acting administrator of GSA said he met with IG Brian Miller and David Shea after accusations the IG investigator's tactics were overly aggressive in looking into the recent SmartPay Conference. Tangherlini also expects to receive suggestions on how the CIO reorganization would work, and how to go forward with the reduction of FAS fees in the coming weeks.

Friday - 09/14/2012, 05:28am EDT
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GSA praised for steps to reform culture, organization

Senate lawmakers and the agency's Inspector General say the strategy to reorganize the General Services Administration and make it more accountable is on the right track. Acting Administrator Dan Tangherlini said he will consolidate IT and HR across the agency, and reduce contracting fees charged by the Federal Acquisition Service.

Thursday - 09/13/2012, 06:33am EDT
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Agencies doing job they already paid FPS to do

A new Government Accountability Office report says the Federal Protective Service isn't doing enough to safeguard more than 9,000 federal buildings.

Tuesday - 09/11/2012, 03:46pm EDT

Federal auditors question fuel use by Afghan army

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction says there's no proof the fuel is actually being used by Afghan forces. It could be lost, stolen or diverted to insurgents.

Monday - 09/10/2012, 11:14am EDT

IG says Justice misreported some terrorism stats

Justice reported in 2009 that 512 people were charged with terrorism or terrorism-related crimes for six years after the September 11, 2001, attacks. But the audit showed 544 people were actually charged during that time period.

Thursday - 09/06/2012, 12:17pm EDT

Why does Social Security need 174,000 bullets?

It didn't take long for the Internet to start buzzing with conspiracy theories after the Social Security Administration posted a notice that it was purchasing 174,000 hollow-point bullets.

Tuesday - 09/04/2012, 01:32pm EDT
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