90 Miles From Tyranny : VA whistleblowers say Denver office did no work for a year

Saturday, July 28, 2018

VA whistleblowers say Denver office did no work for a year

VA whistleblowers say Denver office did no work for a year

DENVER -- Imagine making close to $100,000 a year and having nothing to do at the office.

It's what Denver whistleblowers say was reality for employees at the local Office of the Inspector General for Veterans Affairs.

That's the very division in charge of wiping out waste, fraud and abuse for the medical system that serves the nation's veterans.

"These are your tax dollars that are paying the salaries of these individuals to sit in an office and do absolutely nothing all day," said one anonymous whistleblower to the Problem Solvers.

"After a while it became a joke," is how a second whistleblower described it.

"Come into work and pretty much staring at the wall all day kind of just hanging out every day pretty much with nothing to do."

Both whistleblowers filed complaints with the Office of Special Counsel in Washington, stating an office of 11 employees basically did no work from April 2017 to April 2018.

The combined salaries of those employees during that time frame totaled more than $1.2 million.

"Long lunches, I mean watching movies, reading books. I mean I was doing school work. I`m not going to lie I did not have any work assigned. I spent the majority of my time doing school work," said whistblower No. one, who happened to be a paid intern making $47,214 a year to help conduct information technology audits.

The Problem Solvers obtained copies of the complaints filed with the Office of Special Counsel and the one from whistleblower No. 2 states, "I would have filed this sooner but this office has already had two investigations into management and nothing has happened. The office has actually gotten worse and now you throw in no work.

In mid-June the Office of Special Counsel released a letter to the whistleblowers admitting the Denver OIG office "did not have sufficient work to keep all employees fully engaged on active projects," though it only acknowledges this for a nine-month period from July 2017 to April 2018, instead of the one-year time frame alleged by the whistleblowers.

"It really gives you no confidence in the system," said Rep. Mike Coffman, who represents Colorado's 6th Congressional District.

Coffman said he wants the Veterans Affairs Oversight Committee to investigate how it's possible an office doing almost no work would then hire three more auditors in May of 2018, each making $95,000 a year.

"It`s a big deal to the taxpayer of United States. It`s a big deal to the veterans that aren't getting the resources that they should be getting because they're being wasted in...Read More HERE

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