September 8, 2016
By Lorra B.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has received a subpoena that was issued by a House panel on Wednesday.
According to the Associate Press, the House panel is insisting on explanations for a cost overrun of $1 billion and they want documents to back it up.
The Denver VA hospital in question spent millions of dollars on artwork and furnishings and spent almost three times what their earlier estimates were.
But the Denver VA is not the only VA under the spotlight. Nationwide the VA has spent a staggering amount of money on sprucing up their offices, “including more than $6.4 million spent on the Palo Alto, California, health care system.”
“We will not accept VA trying to pull the wool over the eyes of this committee and the American people for poor decision-making and waste of funds,” stated the chairman of the veteran’s panel, Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla.
Miller went on to say that it was “unfortunate that VA’s continued lack of transparency has led us to this decision” to issue the subpoena, but contended that lawmakers had little choice.”
It seems unimaginable that over 40 veterans died on waiting lists waiting to be seen by a doctor, according to a VA inspector general investigation, while monies that could have been spent saving their lives was used to buy artwork and statues.
This is the fourth subpoena issued by the House panel since 2014 “amid continuing frustration over the VA’s performance following the wait-time scandal that led to the ouster of the VA secretary and a $16 billion overhaul approved by Congress,” according to the AP.
The Denver VA hospital has been dodging the committee’s request for documents by providing only “a summary of an internal inquiry, but not the supporting documents, despite repeated requests from lawmakers.”
Miller has been after the documents related to the art contracts for well over a year. He said he is trying to get to the bottom of why the Palo Alto VA spent almost $500, 000 on two sculptures and a total of more than $6.4 million on furnishings and artwork on that facility alone.
The subpoena, however, is seeking nationwide information on purchases since 2010.
The VA has until September 28 to respond.
By Lorra B.