Report: EPA Paid Employees $1 Million While They Were On Leave… Sometimes For Years

Gina-McCarthy-EPA

Michael Bastasch reports: Want to earn money while on vacation? Go work for the Environmental Protection Agency, which paid eight employees more than $1 million while they were on administrative leave, in some cases for years, according to a government watchdog report.

EPA claimed that John Beale’s fraud was an anomaly, but EPA has allowed a number of employees to waste millions of taxpayer dollars in the last few years through lax internal controls and substandard management.”

The EPA’s inspector general found that “eight employees totaled 20,926 hours and cost the government an estimated $1,096,868” while on paid leave. Each employee “was on extended administrative leave for four or more months,” the IG reported, adding that “four of the eight employees” were on leave for more than a year.

[Also see – EPA Employees Not Fired For Watching Pornography, Stealing Money]

Not only that, the employees who took huge amounts of leave time also got automatic raises — despite their being paid to do no work.

“The EPA’s major time and attendance issues and management failures are no longer surprising, just pathetic. Reforming their policy will be top of our agenda with the new conservative majority.”

— Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter

The EPA IG’s report comes after an October 2014 Government Accountability Office report that estimated the “salary cost for EPA employees on administrative leave for fiscal years (FYs) 2011 through 2013 was $17,550,100.” GAO found that 69 EPA employees used a month or more of administrative leave — 50 of these employees were on leave for more than three months and two were on leave for over a year. These 69 agency employees took 4,711 days of leave from 2011 to 2013. Read the rest of this entry »


Left-Wing Support for Food Stamp Fraud Reaches Absurd New Heights

Here’s the alarmist headline:

Requiring an ID to Eat?! The Right-Wing’s Next Crazy Plot Against Low-Income Americans

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Those crazy evil selfish racist Right-wingers are at it again. Here we go. Their hatred of poor people knows no limits! How can they live with themselves? Taking bread right out of the mouths of disadvantaged people with no identity!  It’s a crazy, wicked, evil RIGHT WING PLOT!

“Under a bill Vitter introduced Wednesday , beneficiaries of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) would be denied their food if they are unable to show a photographic identification card at the register. For millions of low-income Americans who don’t have an official photo ID and can’t necessarily afford to buy one, Vitter’s bill would mean being cut off from their primary food source.”

The Institutional Left is Completely Freaked Out at Suggestion of Showing I.D. to Access Benefits

If that’s really a concern, what about the hundreds of millions of people with jobs and incomes who would be denied food, housing, and basic services, unless they used cash-only for every transaction? Good grief, they would starve! This must be a sinister left-wing plot! Mass starvation, no heat, no safe place to sleep, nothing. Unless all working and non-working people use cash-only for every food purchase, and every transaction necessary to sustain life, there’s no way to avoid it. Mass starvation and homelessness is clearly their secret agenda. (just trying out the inflammatory liberal logic. Looks pretty silly, doesn’t it?)

Really. Who doesn’t have some way to identify themselves when they interact in the marketplace? This is true whether your income is from having a job, and working, or if your income is exclusively from government benefits.

This is the left’s favorite alarmist false crisis. The delusion that there’s a sinister right-wing plot to harm the poor. Their view? It’s a crime to criticize or question the welfare state.

Read the rest of this entry »


Rand Paul introduces constitutional amendment to make all laws equally applicable to citizens and Congress

Paul's amendment would ban laws that don’t apply equally to citizens and government. | AP Photo

Paul’s amendment would ban laws that don’t apply equally to citizens and government. | AP Photo

Forget the Vitter amendment. Rand Paul wants to make sure that Congress can’t ever again write laws with provisions specific to lawmakers.

The Kentucky freshman Republican has introduced a constitutional amendment that would preclude senators and representatives from passing laws that don’t apply equally to U.S. citizens and Congress, the executive branch and the Supreme Court. The amendment is aimed squarely at Obamacare provisions specific to members of Congress and their staffs that became a central point of contention during the government shutdown. Read the rest of this entry »


Harry Reid’s Bad Week

pic_giant_1004_SM_Harry-Reids-Back-Week

The Senate majority leader hasn’t looked like much of a leader at all.

Andrew Stiles writes: The government shutdown that most Democrats thought would benefit them politically has not gone according to plan.

Sure, the initial polling shows that more Americans think Republicans (44 percent) are to blame than Democrats (35 percent), as most expected. But Democrats have hardly come off looking great. Reports that the Obama administration ordered the shuttering of the open-air World War II Memorial, temporarily blocking veterans from visiting, didn’t help. Top Democrats such as House minority leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic National Committee chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz have refused to give up their paychecks during the shutdown. “Negotiations” between the two sides have descended into a war of Twitter hashtags. The White House is trolling for shutdown sob stories.

Read the rest of this entry »


Why should Congress get special exemption under Obamacare?

Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is determined to force his fellow senators to do something many don't want to do: Vote on whether the law, specifically Obamacare, applies to members of Congress and their staff. (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is determined to force his fellow senators to do something many don’t want to do: Vote on whether the law, specifically Obamacare, applies to members of Congress and their staff. (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

Byron York writes:  “I’m going to get a vote,” says Republican Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana. “I can’t tell you how, or when, but I’m going to get a vote.”

Vitter is determined to force his fellow senators to do something many don’t want to do: Vote on whether the law, specifically Obamacare, applies to members of Congress and their staff.

Back in 2009, when Democrats were writing the massive new national health care scheme, Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley offered an amendment. Obamacare created exchanges through which millions of Americans would purchase “affordable” health coverage. Grassley’s amendment simply required lawmakers, staff, and some in the executive branch to get their insurance through the exchanges, too.

To every Republican’s amazement, Democrats accepted the amendment. It’s never been fully clear why; the best theory is they intended to take the provision out in conference committee, but couldn’t do so because they lost their filibuster-proof 60-vote majority. In any event, Obamacare — the law of the land, as supporters like to say — now requires Congress to buy its health care coverage through the exchanges.

That has caused Democratic panic as the formal arrival of Obamacare nears. Right now, all lawmakers and staff are entitled to enjoy generously-subsidized coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits plan. Why give up that subsidy and go on the exchanges like any average American? Read the rest of this entry »


The Hypocrisy Of Congress’s Gold-Plated Health Care

As close observers of history and human nature, James Madison and the other Founders of the U.S. Constitution knew that the equal and unbiased application of the law to all people, especially elected officials, is essential to freedom and justice and one of the primary safeguards from authoritarianism and oppression by a ruling class.

And so, referring to the members of Congress, James Madison wrote in Federalist No. 57: “[T]hey can make no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends, as well as on the great mass of the society.”

Today, elected officials need to be reminded of these truths. Under pressure from Congress, the White House has carved out a special exemption for Congress and its staffers from ObamaCare—the law it recently deemed necessary for the entire country. No Republicans voted for ObamaCare. Yet it appears that some of them support the exemption President Obama approved on his own—so they would not have to go on record with a vote for or against it.

This is the height of hypocrisy, and worse, a trampling of the Founders’ code of equal application of the law. Having forced a health law on the American people, the White House and Democrats now seek to insulate themselves from the noxious portions of the law, and from the implementation struggles, indecision and uncertainty that many other Americans face today. Read the rest of this entry »


Momentum Building to End Special Obamacare Treatment for Congress

Speaker+Pelosi+Swears+Members+111th+Congress+1ub7AYCflDAl Jonathan Strong reports: A growing number of congressional Republicans believe GOP leadership in the House and Senate will inevitably embrace a proposal spearheaded by Senator David Vitter to end a special Obamacare subsidy for congressional staffers.

Vitter will try to add it as an amendment to the government-funding bill under consideration in the Senate, and Speaker John Boehner is considering trying to force the issue when the bill comes back to the House. Read the rest of this entry »


EPA Crimes: Former Advisor Beale expected to plead guilty in $900,000 pay fraud

English: The headquarters of the United States...

The headquarters of the United States Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C.

By  and 

Over the past 12 years, John C. Beale was often away from his job as a high-level staffer at the Environmental Protection Agency. He cultivated an air of mystery and explained his lengthy absences by telling his bosses that he was doing top-secret work, including for the CIA.

Now, Beale is charged with stealing nearly $900,000 from the EPA by receiving pay and bonuses he did not deserve. He faces up to three years in prison.

Read the rest of this entry »