Over Half of Separation Clauses at International Relief and Development Violate Whistleblower Laws According to Inspector General

A federal inspector general said Thursday that more than half of the separation agreements signed by departing employees of a nonprofit that received hundreds of millions of tax dollars to work in Iraq and Afghanistan contain provisions that violate whistleblower-protection laws.  The separation agreements warned employees that they could face legal action if they made disparaging remarks about IRD, including comments to “funding agencies” or “officials of any government.”


Read more at Stars and Stripes

Attorney Sentenced to 70 Months In Jail For $28 Million Medicare Fraud Scheme

A disbarred Florida attorney was sentenced in federal court in Tampa, Florida today to serve 70 months in prison in connection with her role in a $28.3 million Medicare fraud scheme involving false claims for physical and occupational therapy services.  The case is being investigated by HHS-OIG and the FBI and was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, under the supervision of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida.

Read the entire article at eNews Park Forest

DHS Inspector General Embraces Continuous Monitoring

When Jaime Vargas with the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General agreed to share how his office is faring in the security realm, FedTech jumped at the opportunity. Jaime Vargas, chief information security officer for the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General.

Read the entire article at FedTech Magazine

Inspector General Finds Problems Remain In Oil & Gas Leasing

Late last month the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Interior issued a twenty 7 page report outlining continuing issues with the onshore oil and gas leasing process administered by the Bureau of Land Management. The wide variation in approving APDs at BLM offices varies widely, ranging from 37 days in Anchorage, Alaska to 328 days in Buffalo, Wyoming.

Read the entire article at Fairfield Sun Times

State ethics watchdog plans to leave office

Thomas said his interest in the job increased after a change to state law allowed special prosecutors to work full-time instead of part-time. Thomas, a former Clay County prosecutor, became the state’s first inspector general when the office was created under then-Gov. Mitch Daniels in 2005. Since then, the office has pushed for criminal charges or ethics complaints in more than 100 cases.

Read the entire article at Indianapolis Star

OIG Urges FHFA To Sue Over Force-Placed Insurance

The Office of Inspector General for the Federal Housing Finance Agency is urging the FHFA to sue its servicers and lender-placed insurance providers because Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have suffered considerable financial harm in the LPI market, possibly as much as $158 million in 2012 alone from excessively priced insurance coverage.

Read the entire article at mortgagecrisiswatch.com

Port Authority inspector general dies at age 70

Robert E. Van Etten, the veteran inspector general of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey who was leading an investigation into Sep.’s George Washington Bridge lane closings, died at his home in Teaneck on Mon., the agency said. Etten joined the Port Authority as inspector general in 1996, after a 31-year career in law enforcement that included service in the former U.S. Customs Service.

Read the entire article at The Star-Ledger

New Palm Beach County Inspector General starts work

New county Inspector General John Carey started work this week and out-going Inspector General Sheryl Steckler’s last day at work is scheduled to be Friday. Steckler was the county’s first-ever inspector general, a position created as part of the ethics reforms prompted by a string of local government corruption scandals.

Read the entire article at Sun Sentinel

Ex-owner of midstate company sentenced in contracting fraud case

Schuylkill Products President and CEO Joseph Nagle has been sentenced in federal court in Harrisburg and fined more than $27,000. Nagle was president, CEOr and part- owner of Schuylkill Products Inc. Ernest G. Fink, of Orwigsburg, Pennsylvania, SPI’s former Vice-President, Chief Operating Officer and part-owner is scheduled to be sentenced on July 14, 2014.

Read entire article at witf.org

Jefferson council approves changes to consultant’s contract

A consultant aiding in the proposed lease of West Jefferson Medical Center to LCMC Health was switched from a flat fee to an hourly rate for his work on the deal during a Jefferson Parish Council meeting Thurs., bringing the contract in line with a recommendation from the parish’s inspector general.

Read the entire article at The New Orleans Advocate