Thanks to Sabrina Pacifici at BeSpacific for posting about this Four-part series by the Washington Examiner examining and illuminating the work and current state of inspectors general. Inspectors General are little-known independent agencies of the United States federal government and are charged with identifying, auditing, and investigating fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement within the parent agency — but sometimes act against the public interest by sweeping issues under the rug or by persecuting instead of protecting federal whistleblowers (see e.g., Matt Taibi’s Rolling Stone piece “Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes?”). There are 72 IGs as a result of a 1978 Inspector General Act proposed by President Carter in the wake of revelations of federal contractors being paid for work that was never done, shoddy office furniture being bought at premium prices, and widespread political manipulation of government procurement.
The Council of Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE) includes a list of all agency IGs.
Lastly, Eric Mill has created Oversight.io a searchable database of 16,000+ (and growing) IG reports. Read his explanation of the project on the Sunlight Foundation blog and check out his GitHub of the project for background, shareable code, and ways to help with the project. Thanks Eric!!
- Part Four: Few fixes available for problem IGs, BY MARK FLATTEN | DECEMBER 4, 2014 | The president hires IGs for Cabinet-level agencies, and only the president can fire them.
- Part Three: Bad things happen to whistleblowers when watchdogs become attack dogs, BY MARK FLATTEN | 12/03/14. A whistleblower tried to report wrongdoing to the Veterans Affairs IG — and faced retaliation from administrators.
- Part Two: Temporary IGs subject to agency manipulators covering up waste, BY MARK FLATTEN | 12/02/14. Interim IGs have been accused of softening investigative reports under pressure from agency administrators.
- Part One: IGs form front line of war on waste and fraud, but weak links remain, BY MARK FLATTEN | 12/01/14. Whistleblowers routinely say inspectors general failed to investigate their charges of wrongdoing.
[HT to beSpacific!.