OIG responds to Lucas move to replacing acting director



The U.S. Commerce Department’s Office of Inspector General says allegations of whistleblower retaliation made by Oklahoma Congressman Frank Lucas and other members of a House committee against the Acting IG Roderick Anderson were  investigated and found to have no basis. The book was closed on the claims.

In a response to OK Energy Today, the OIG said the US Office of Special Counsel conducted investigations into the allegation of whistleblower retaliation based on actions taken in 2021 and 22 and Anderson has been notified the OSC “closed its investigations with no further action.”

It was in March when Rep. Lucas, chair of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee sent a letter stating that Anderson should be removed as Acting Inspector General.

“These are the same retaliation allegations that the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee has been investigating. OSC is the government’s expert on retaliation, and the closure of these investigations without findings of wrongdoing by OIG officials is significant,” stated the Commerce Department.

It further stated the OSC is the government’s expert on retaliation and the closure of the investigations without findings of wrongdoing “is significant.”

“OIG remains committed to its mission of providing independent and objective oversight to the Department and dedicated to providing its employees with a healthy, engaging work environment,” according to the statement.

Rep. Lucas was joined by Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California, the Ranking member on the committee in asking President Biden to name a new Acting Inspector General. They charged the committee had “credible allegations that he also engaged in retaliatory behavior and misconduct at the agency” before the resignation of former Inspector General Peggy Gustafson.

“Over the course of the Committee’s investigation, which included depositions, staff-level meetings, transcribed interviews, and document review, it became clear that much of the senior leadership of the DOC OIG – including Acting Inspector General Roderick Anderson – was entangled in the allegations that had been brought to the Committee’s attention,” Rep. Lucas wrote in his March letter to the White House.