Bill would let VA recoup improper relocation payouts

Bill would let VA recoup improper relocation payouts

New legislation proposed by the chairman of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee would allow VA officials to take back any employee relocation payments deemed improper or illegal.

The proposal would apply to past or future payouts and comes in direct response to a decision by VA leaders not to try to recover almost $400,000 in relocation expenses paid to a pair of department administrators who were later demoted and reassigned for abuse of power.

Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., the committee chairman, has criticized VA for that inaction, and publicly supported firing the two employees instead of demoting them.

"If VA is ever going to reform itself into an organization worthy of the veterans it is charged with serving, it cannot tolerate corruption within its ranks," he said in a statement Tuesday. "Yet that's exactly what the department did."

Last month, VA officials removed two regional office directors — Diana Rubens in Philadelphia and Kimberly Graves in St. Paul, Minnesota — from their posts in response to an internal investigation that found they misused their authority to gain promotions and collect thousands of dollars in questionable moving expenses.

 Read more at USA Today

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