Oversight: The Office of the Inspector General for the Department of the Interior
For more than two years, the Committee on Natural Resources has been conducting oversight of the Office of the Inspector General (IG).
The Committee has held a specific oversight hearing focused on the activities of the IG during Mary Kendall’s tenure as Acting Inspector General, and the Committee’s majority oversight staff have reviewed thousands of internal IG and Department documents, spoken with several current and former IG staff, including the Acting Inspector General, and reviewed specific IG case files.
A Majority Staff Report, entitled “Holding the Interior Watchdog Accountable,” details mismanagement by Ms. Kendall while overseeing the IG. These include: not pursuing investigations involving political appointees or Administration priorities; informing senior Department officials of problems without conducting formal investigations and not issuing reports to Congress and the public; not adequately documenting the management of IG investigations and operations; serving in an appointed policy role in conflict with the IG’s investigative duties; preventing an investigator from seeking information from a White House official; and providing inaccurate and misleading information to Congress.
The report also details how Ms. Kendall has openly expressed the desire to receive the nomination to become the permanent Inspector General while administering the IG’s oversight role in a manner that was privately accommodating to senior Department officials and the Obama Administration compared to the IG’s more assertive style in past Administrations.
Click here to read a copy of the report “Holding the Interior Watchdog Accountable.”
Click here to read a letter Chairman Hastings sent to President Obama calling on him to appoint a permanent Inspector General for the Department of the Interior.