House Committee Subpoenas St. Paul VA Administrator
WASHINGTON (AP) — A House committee issued subpoenas Wednesday to five high-ranking officials at the Department of Veterans Affairs after the officials did not show up at a hearing on alleged manipulation of the agency's hiring system.
The House Veterans Affairs Committee voted unanimously to subpoena the officials to appear at a hearing Nov. 2 on the allegations.
The VA's acting inspector general says two senior VA officials forced regional managers to accept job transfers against their will — then stepped into the vacant positions themselves, keeping their pay while reducing their responsibilities.
The report said the officials also misused VA's moving-expense system to claim more $400,000 in questionable moving expenses.
Diana Rubens, director of the Philadelphia regional office for the Veterans Benefits Administration, and Kimberly Graves, director of the St. Paul, Minnesota regional office for the VBA, face possible criminal prosecution.
Rubens and Graves skipped Wednesday's hearing of the House veterans panel, as did three other VA officials called to discuss the allegations.
Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., the committee's chairman, said the subpoenas marked just the fourth time the committee has issued a subpoena. "I assure you that I have not come to this decision lightly," Miller said, calling the allegations against Rubens and Graves disturbing.