FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 20, 2014
Contact: Lindsay Jancek
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Walorski Comments During House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Hearing on Department of Veterans Affairs Outrageous Bonus System
WASHINGTON D.C. – Earlier today, the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee (HVAC) held a full committee hearing to examine the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) dysfunctional bonus system.
Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02), a member of the committee, heard testimony describing how the VA awards bonuses. The committee learned that the criteria used reward these bonuses created an incentive to lie and falsify information – putting veterans at risk and rewarding executives for bad behavior.
Watch Walorski’s remarks here, or click on the image below.
Walorski asked Gina Farrisee, VA assistant secretary for human resources, for information regarding the Presidential Rank Awards that were given to executives at the VA. She also requested a list of all senior executive service (SES) level VA employees in the state of Indiana and any bonuses they received for the last five years.
Farrisee responded she would try and obtain all information within a few weeks. HVAC Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL) gave Farrisee an ultimatum that if the information was not provided to Walorski, it would be subpoenaed.
Despite the fact that multiple VA Inspector General reports have identified that VA bonus pay has no clear link to performance, the department has consistently defended its celebration of executives who presided over widespread mismanagement, while giving them glowing performance reviews and cash bonuses of up to $63,000.
On Wednesday, Walorski was appointed by Speaker Boehner to the VA conference committee to resolve the differences between the House and Senate veterans affairs legislation.
Presidential Rank Award – The president recognizes and celebrates a small group of career senior executives and senior career employees with the Presidential Rank Award. Distinguished Rank recipients receive a lump-sum payment of 35 percent of their rate of annual basic pay; Meritorious Rank recipients receive 20 percent of their rate of annual basic pay. All recipients receive a framed certificate signed by the President.