Iowa Senator Seeks Answers about CFATS Allegations
Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has asked Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano about allegations of mismanagement and spending abuse by the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program, according to an article from NBC News.
The CFATS program was created in 2007 to determine risk factors for chemical facilities and mandate and assess security plans for high-risk facilities, the article says.
Grassley asked Napolitano about the program in April, following a report that said problems within CFATS were so severe that they pose a measurable risk to the program.
Since then, a whistleblower has provided more details about the DHS’s management of the program, including allegations that CFATS assigned employees to non-existent field offices – allowing them to work from home while claiming on paper to be located in phantom CFATS field offices, NBC reports.
Grassley says that one byproduct of this was that employees living in low locality-pay areas while claiming duty stations in high locality-pay areas and receiving higher pay as a result, the article states.
Allegations also included routine procurement by CFATS of tactical and field equipment for which the program had no use, and a high-level official within DHS allegedly refused to report information about the abuses to the Inspector General.
Grassley asked for additional detailed information from Napolitano in a July 30, 2012 letter. He asked for a response by Monday, August 13, the article says.