An editorial in the Las Vegas Review-Journal shined the spotlight on waste and abuse exposed by military whistleblower and James Hoyer client Lt Col Timothy Ferner. Lt Col Ferner’s case against defense contractor SAIC exposed systemic problems with how Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas secured contractors and spent taxpayer money.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial pointed to this case as an example of a bigger problem of government waste which continues to plague the country. Here is an excerpt:
The Coalition and Irregular Warfare Center was launched at Nellis Air Force Base in 2006 with the charge of finding ways to counteract the improvised explosive devices and roadside bombs that were killing and maiming American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Unfortunately, as is the case with far too many government entities these days, the warfare center’s primary mission became plowing through piles of taxpayer money.
As reported Oct. 13 by the Review-Journal’s Keith Rogers, in a 54-month period, $42 million was funneled through the CIWC and its partner in the project, the 505th Command and Control Wing. It was unclear how much of that money supported the improvement of irregular warfare capabilities, but there was plenty of off-point spending, including $427,000 for an effort to develop passwords for monitoring finances of an Army warfare group.
According to retired Lt. Col. Tim Werner, whose whistle-blower complaint got him fired in 2009 but ultimately uncovered the large-scale contract abuse, there were also unauthorized money transfers between the 505th Command and CIWC contractors, and misappropriation of funds for items such as “switchblades, high-intensity laser lights, body armor, retractable batons, handcuffs and other illegally purchased equipment, tens of thousands of dollars of equipment, some of which went missing.”
Click here to continue reading the Las Vegas Review-Journal Editorial.