OIG Seal
Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General
Michael J. Missal, Inspector General

OIG Reports

| 18-03251-88 | Summary | Report

Recommendations (1)Toggle Content


OpenClosed - ImplementedClosed - Not Implemented

No. 1   to Office of General Counsel (OGC)

The Office of General Counsel communicates to its telework-approving supervisors that they lack authority to grant permanent exceptions to the twice-per-pay-period reporting requirement of 5 C.F.R. § 531.605(d)(1), and that in any instance in which an exception is granted pursuant to 5 C.F.R. § 531.605(d)(2) or any other applicable provision, the supervisor is obligated to periodically reassess the employee’s telework arrangement to determine whether a permanent change of official worksite is necessary.

| 18-04968-249 | Summary | Report

Recommendations (22)Toggle Content


OpenClosed - ImplementedClosed - Not Implemented

No. 1   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection directs a review of the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection’s compliance with the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017 requirements in order to ensure proper implementation and eliminate any activities not within its authorized scope.

No. 2   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The VA Secretary rescinds the February 2018 Delegation of Authority and consults with the Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, the VA Office of General Counsel, and other appropriate parties to determine whether a revised delegation is necessary, and if so, ensures compliance with statutory requirements.

No. 3   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, in consultation with the Office of General Counsel, Office of Inspector General, Office of the Medical Inspector, and the Office of Resolution Management establishes comprehensive processes for evaluating and documenting whether allegations, in whole or in part, should be handled within the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection or referred to other VA entities for potential action or referred to independent offices such as the Office of Inspector General.

No. 4   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection makes certain that policies and processes are developed, in consultation with the VA Office of General Counsel and Office of Resolution Management, to consistently and promptly advise complainants of their right to bring allegations of discrimination through the Equal Employment Opportunity process.

No. 5   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection ensures that the divisions of the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection adopt standard operating procedures and related detailed guidance to make certain they are fair, unbiased, thorough, and objective in their work.

No. 6   to Office of General Counsel (OGC)

The VA General Counsel updates VA Directive 0700 and VA Handbook 0700 with revisions clarifying the extent to which VA Directive 0700 and VA Handbook 0700 apply to the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, if at all.

No. 7   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection assigns a quality assurance function to an entity positioned to review Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection divisions’ work for accuracy, thoroughness, timeliness, fairness, and other improvement metrics.

No. 8   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection directs the establishment of a training program for all relevant personnel on appropriate investigative techniques, case management, and disciplinary actions.

No. 9   to Human Resources and Administration/Operations, Security, and Preparedness (HRA/OSP)

The VA Secretary, in consultation with the VA Office of General Counsel, provides comprehensive guidance and training reasonably designed to instill consistency in penalties for actions taken pursuant to 38 U.S.C. §§ 713 and 714.

No. 10   to Human Resources and Administration/Operations, Security, and Preparedness (HRA/OSP)

The VA Secretary ensures the provision of comprehensive guidance and training to relevant disciplinary officials to maintain compliance with the mandatory adverse action criteria outlined in 38 U.S.C. § 731.

No. 11   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection makes certain that in any disciplinary action recommended by the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, all relevant evidence is provided to the VA Secretary (or the disciplinary officials designated to act on the Secretary’s behalf).

No. 12   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection implements safeguards consistent with statutory mandates to maintain the confidentiality of employees that make submissions, including guidelines for communications with other VA components.

No. 13   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection leverages available resources, such as VA’s National Center for Organizational Development and the Office of Resolution Management, to conduct an organizational assessment of Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection employee concerns and develop an appropriate action plan to strengthen Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection workforce engagement and satisfaction.

No. 14   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection develops a process and training for the Triage Division staff to identify and address potential retaliatory investigations.

No. 15   to Human Resources and Administration/Operations, Security, and Preparedness (HRA/OSP)

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection collaborates with the Assistant Secretary for Human Resources and Administration, and the VA Secretary to develop performance plan requirements as required by 38 U.S.C. § 732.

No. 16   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection ensures the implementation of whistleblower disclosure training to all VA employees as required under 38 U.S.C. § 733.

No. 17   to Human Resources and Administration/Operations, Security, and Preparedness (HRA/OSP)

The VA Secretary makes certain supervisors’ training is implemented as required under § 209 of the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017.

No. 18   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection confers with the VA Office of General Counsel to develop processes for collecting and tracking justification information related to proposed disciplinary action modifications consistent with 38 U.S.C. § 323(f)(2).

No. 19   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The VA Secretary in consultation with the Office of General Counsel and the Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection ensures compliance with the 60-day reporting requirement in 38 U.S.C. § 323(f)(2) consistent with congressional intent.

No. 20   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection develops or enhances database systems to provide the capability to track all data required by the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017.

No. 21   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

In consultation with the VA Office of General Counsel, the Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection completes the publication of Systems of Records Notices for all systems of records maintained by the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, and adopts procedures reasonably designed to ensure that the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection does not create additional systems of records without complying with the requirements of the Privacy Act of 1974.

No. 22   to Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection

The Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection consults with the VA Chief Freedom of Information Act Officer to ensure adequate training and staffing of the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection’s Freedom of Information Act Office, and establishes procedures to comply with FOIA requirements including timeliness.

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