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Oversight Accomplishments

The Committee on Oversight and Government Reform conducts vigorous oversight to uncover waste, fraud, and abuse, to improve the operations of the federal government, and to examine wrongdoing in the private sector. The Committee has legislative jurisdiction over federal procurement, civil service, management and information policy.

The following links describe some of the oversight accomplishments of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in the 110th Congress. For a summary of the Committee's legislative accomplishments, please view the legislation page.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Administration Abandons Proposal to Weaken Air Quality Protections for National Parks

EPA announced it would not go forward with regulation that would have degraded air quality in our National Parks and other areas with clean air.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Administration Drops Effort to Roll Back Pollution Requirements for Power Plants

EPA announced that it would not go forward with the regulation that would allow older power plants to increase their emissions of air pollutants and exacerbate global warming.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Congress Passes Defense Base Act Insurance Reforms

Following a May 15, 2008, Committee hearing revealing that the top four insurers made nearly $600 million in excess profits from coverage provided under the Defense Base Act (DBA) program, Congress passed legislation requiring that the Department of Defense develop a more cost-effective strategy for obtaining DBA insurance for agency contractors.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Committee Oversight Leads to “National Action Plan” to Address Healthcare-Associated Infections

Following an April 2008 Committee hearing on healthcare-associated infections, the Department of Health and Human Services announced a “national action plan” to reduce the preventable deaths and illness that result from infections contracted by hospital patients.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Congress Passes Lead Free Toys Act

Chairman Waxman has been investigating the dangers of lead-contaminated toys and jewelry since 2005 and his legislation, the Lead Free Toys Act, was enacted as part of H.R. 4040, a bill to reform the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

House Passes FDA Tobacco Bill

After over a decade of investigative efforts by Chairman Waxman, the House passed legislation introduced by Chairman Waxman and Ranking Member Davis to authorize FDA regulation of tobacco products.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

House Passes Reforms of White House E-mail Use

In response to Committee investigations showing the loss and destruction of White House e-mails, the House on July 9, 2008, passed reform legislation requiring the Archivist to issue standards ensuring the preservation of White House e-mails. In addition, the White House responded to the Committee’s investigation with its own reforms that may reduce the use of political e-mail accounts for official business.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Committee Oversight Prompts Action on FEMA Trailers

In response to the Committee’s investigation into formaldehyde levels in FEMA trailers, FEMA announced that it would relocate families to safer housing.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Congress Passes Farm Legislation Cutting Crop Insurance Waste by $3.4 Billion

In response to a Committee hearing identifying extensive waste in the federal crop insurance program, Congress passed legislation estimated to produce $3.4 billion in savings from the crop insurance program.

Monday, June 16, 2008

EPA Begins Assessing Navajo Nation Uranium Contamination

A Committee hearing into uranium contamination on the Navajo Reservation prompted the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies to begin assessing the extent of contamination and to prepare clean up plans.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

New Leadership Appointed at the General Services Administration

In response to the Committee’s investigation, the Special Counsel found that Lurita Doan, the Administrator of the General Services Administration, violated the federal Hatch Act when she asked GSA employees to assist Republican candidates for office. The Special Counsel reported this finding to President Bush and recommended that he discipline her “to the fullest extent” for her actions. On April 29, 2008, President Bush asked Ms. Doan to step down from GSA.

Friday, February 08, 2008

New Leadership Appointed at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

After the Committee raised questions about the conduct of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and its then-director, Dr. David Schwartz, the Director of the National Institutes of Health announced there would be a comprehensive review of Dr. Schwartz’s conduct and Dr. Schwartz resigned.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

New Leadership Appointed to Oversee the Construction of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad

After the Committee raised questions about the cost and quality of the construction of the new U.S. embassy in Baghdad, the three State Department officials in charge of the project resigned and the Justice Department opened an investigation. New leadership was appointed to lead the construction effort.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Congress Reduces Travel Budget of Drug Czar

As a result of a Committee investigation into the politicization of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, Congress reduced the travel budget of the drug czar by 25% for fiscal year 2008. The budget limitation included an express warning that travel by agency officials “should occur for official business reasons only, not for political gain.”

Friday, December 07, 2007

New Leadership Appointed at the Office of the State Department Inspector General

After a Committee investigation questioned the effectiveness of the State Department Inspector General, the Inspector General resigned and new leadership took over the office.

Friday, November 30, 2007

CDC Updates Compendium of Effective HIV Prevention Techniques

In response to oversight by the Committee, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated the Compendium of HIV Prevention Interventions with newly identified effective programs.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Committee Oversight Triggers Private Security Contractor Reforms

After Committee investigations raised significant questions about the conduct of Blackwater USA in Iraq, the House passed legislation to expand federal criminal jurisdiction over the conduct of private military contractors and the State Department implemented multiple administrative reforms. In addition, Congress enacted legislation requiring disclosure of the salaries of top company officials.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Department of Energy Agrees to Environmental Study Request

In response to a request by Chairman Waxman, the Department of Energy announced that it would prepare an environmental impact statement prior to the remediation of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory.

Friday, June 15, 2007

GSA Suspends Proposal to Outsource Contract Oversight

In response to concerns raised by Chairman Waxman, the General Services Administration suspended a plan to hire contractors to conduct contract oversight and management.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

FDA Adds Warning for Heart Problems to Avandia

Following a Committee hearing assessing the risks of the diabetes drug Avandia, the FDA announced the addition of two “black box” warnings on the drug label.

Monday, April 23, 2007

NIEHS Terminates Sciences International Contract

In response to conflict of interest concerns raised by Chairman Waxman and Senator Barbara Boxer, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences terminated a contract with Sciences International, a private contractor involved in reviewing the risks of bisphenol-A.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Walter Reed Investigation Prompts Military Health Reforms

Within a week after the Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs held the first hearing on the deplorable conditions at Walter Reed, the top Army officer at Walter Reed resigned. This hearing and three others held by the Committee and the Subcommittee also prompted a series of reforms in the care of wounded soldiers and veterans.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Coast Guard Adopts Reforms after Committee Hearing on Deepwater Contract

Following a Committee hearing into abuses in the $24 billion Deepwater contract, the Coast Guard announced it was transferring control over the contract from private contractors to the Coast Guard and initiating proceedings to recoup some of the taxpayer funds used to build defective ships.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

DOD Announces Withholding of $20 Million from KBR

In response to a Committee oversight hearing, the Department of Defense announced that it would withhold $19.6 million in unjustified charges attributable to KBR’s improper use of security subcontractors.

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