Miller Statement on Phoenix VAHCS Firings
Chairman Jeff Miller released the following statement today regarding recent firings at the Phoenix VA Health Care System more than two years after the facility’s wait-time scandal became public.
“This decision is the right one for veterans and taxpayers. Deputy Secretary Gibson is correct in saying the process took ‘far too long.’ That’s why the Senate must follow the House’s lead and act to fix the outright dysfunction inherent in our federal civil service rules, which put the job security of VA bureaucrats ahead of the veterans they are charged with serving. The House addressed this issue head-on last July by passing the VA Accountability Act, and it’s well past time for the Senate to get behind this commonsense proposal. In the meantime, VA – forced to tolerate misbehavior throughout its ranks – will continue to lurch from one scandal to another, and veterans will pay the price.” – Rep. Jeff Miller, Chairman, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
The VA Accountability Act (H.R. 1994) passed the House in July of 2015 and is pending in the Senate. It would give the VA secretary the authority to swiftly fire or demote any employee for poor performance or misconduct while protecting whistleblowers and limiting the agency’s ability to place misbehaving employees on paid leave. It would also give VA the ability to recover annuities on pensions of VA senior executives convicted of felonies committed on the job.