BPA: Wyden Calls for Investigation of
by Ted Sickinger
Sen. Ron Wyden says his office has credible evidence of ongoing retaliation by a manager at the Bonneville Power Administration against one of the whistleblowers in the agency's ongoing hiring scandal.
Wyden, the chair of the Senate Energy Committee, wrote Thursday to the Department of Energy's Inspector General, Gregory Friedman, outlining a specific set of allegedly retaliatory actions against a whistleblower in BPA's human resources department. He asked Friedman to investigate the incidents and determine whether other whistleblowers within BPA have been retaliated against since the Inspector General issued its special report on BPA's hiring problems in October.
That October report described a massively dysfunctional human resources operation where managers had little knowledge of federal hiring rules, informal practices were being used that discriminated against veterans and other applicants, and where the management culture was characterized by mistrust and intimidation.
BPA's Acting Administrator, Elliot Mainzer, has pledged to get to the bottom of the problems and solve them, though the agency has taken few personnel actions so far in response to the investigative findings. He has assured employees that BPA would be free of discrimination or retaliation, and told the Oregonian recently that he was putting his personal integrity behind that commitment.
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