August 22nd, 2009
04:12 PM ET
5 years ago

VA workers given millions in bonuses as vets await checks

 Lawmakers want to know why some IT workers in the VA Department have received millions in bonuses.
Lawmakers want to know why some IT workers in the VA Department have received millions in bonuses.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - While hundreds of thousands of disability claims lay backlogged at the Department of Veterans Affairs, thousands of technology employees at the department received $24 million in bonuses, a new report says.

A report issued by the VA's Office of Inspector General said the department issued millions of dollars in awards over a two-year period in 2007 and 2008.

"The frequent and large dollar amount awards given to employees were unusual and often absurd," the report stated.

The reports also called the payments "not fiscally responsible."

Four high-level employees received about $60,000, $73,000, $58,000, and $59,000, respectively, according to the report, without sufficient justification. Another employee received a $4,500 performance award within the first 90 days of her employment from a manager who said that she did not even remember her.

The annual average award per employee was about $2,500 for both years, according to the report. About 4,700 awards and bonuses were issued in 2007, and about 5,000 in 2008.

Full story


Filed under: Veterans Affairs
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    Shame, shame, shame on the VA.

    August 22, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  2. Dennis

    This isn't unexpected. Let's see the VA's Death Book. Are the VA employees being compensated for not-refusing-but-backlogging claims to limit the Federal Gvt's long-term liability? Talk about "mission creep?" In the meantime, we're giving $50 billion per year to Egypt for using their prisons to torture people who haven't really yielded good intelligence–EVER! Blame Democrats–blame Republicans, but mostly blame the American People for continuing to elect greed-hungry boobs who have never been above reproach to serve as our elected "leaders."
    I'm for performance bonuses for ideas that save the Gvt money, but the amounts should be limited to $2500 per award. This drastically limits the tragic incentive to take away what Veterans have earned and, in most cases, the Gvt has caused in terms of disabilities.

    August 22, 2009 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  3. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    The shame, southern hottie, lies with those who authorized such bonuses, which have been going on for years. Many, many VA employees are hard-working slugs who toil for merely the bread and butter of their sustenance.

    Perhaps all bonuses should be suspended, both in the public and private sectors, until straighter heads can figure out just whom is truly deserving.

    August 22, 2009 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  4. Karen

    We do such a shabby job of taking care of our vets and they have the nerve to give bonuses to high level employees. SHAME ON THE VA! The vets served to protect these greedy people!

    August 22, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  5. Moe, NY

    This is just plain disgusting. Something needs to be done and done fast.

    August 22, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  6. walt

    Well... aint that a kick in the nuts. Who said Public Option insurance don't pay.

    August 22, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  7. Mark Lins

    I would hope someone would investigate this and put a stop to it.

    August 22, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  8. mk

    2007, 2008 you say? Wasn't that during W's time??? How much did he love and respect our troops?

    ALL of the pathetic, fake patriots who are screaming that we are becoming a "socialist" Country (never mind farm aide, medicare, social security etc...) should be as outraged as I am. But, alas, they are not. Why? Becasue they are so consummed with hate and fear they can't read the real news. Unless Rush gives this to them and blames President Obama (some how he will connect it to him) they will all be silent. HYPOCRITES lousy, un-american HYPOCRITES.

    August 22, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  9. Chuck

    Another abomination by the failed "Cheney/Bush" administration who will go down in history as the worst two to ever to have, unfortunately, been given the reins of power. .

    August 22, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  10. because technology employees laid their lives on the line fixing those lines of code

    technology employees if you HAVE ONE OUNCE OF SHAME you will give the money back

    I don't think you do, so I will not be surprised or saddened

    Our country is going down the toilet

    August 22, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  11. Mark,B'ham,Al.

    The VA worker are civil servants and union why would they not be taken care of before those that wore the uniform of this great nation. Civil Service has always been treated better by the democrats than the military has from my 20 years of active duty, being a military brat all my youth, and retired from the Navy which is my life experience.

    August 22, 2009 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  12. Big Ed

    Veterans first! Period!

    August 22, 2009 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  13. Aunt Bea and Opie

    1999 to 2008 the claims got backlogged,under whos watch could that have been?So be so quick to jump poor George,we all knew how special the troops were to him.He did another fine job with body armor and special needs of our troops in action during his watch.

    August 22, 2009 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  14. Ellen

    What is this country coming to? Where are the morals?. . . . long gone I'm afraid. Sad day in America.

    August 22, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  15. Illinoistom

    One more reason to reject a government run (some would say screwed up) public option.

    August 22, 2009 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  16. DV - X /Sr. Network Engineer III

    A disabled vet myself, I also worked in information technology. It is a very competitive feild to work in, those bonuses are not all that large. As for the $4500 performance award within the first 90 days. I myself have received such a bonus. Its why they hired that person, what was so important that needed to be done, and because that person could do the job and had the skills to do the job no one else had, they were paid. Also it is not unusual to work way more than 40 hours a week, since you cannot work on live systems during the day, you work all day, and then odd hours at night, weekends, and holidays to do maintenance on systems. What is pathetic is getting payed as much as a union auto worker does to stick a bolt in a hole and screw a nut on it as a car moves down the line. thats a story.

    August 22, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  17. Gus The Willie

    Looks and sounds like we have a Bush hold over.

    August 22, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  18. Lion

    Obama's buraucrats, wait until the "Health Care Reform" with all the money wasted for... workers??

    August 22, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  19. FREE AMERICA

    WOW is this how the VA is ran ,and when the veterans are treated do you think the VA health plan is ran any better. Wake up America we need health care improvments ,but don't let the goverment run it please.

    August 22, 2009 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  20. Gerry

    Who is in charge of the veterans affairs? Lets condem big business but the VA is a exception.

    August 22, 2009 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  21. valwayne

    Yet we're suppose to trust our Government to run our Healthcare system? Have the Democrats lost their collective minds?

    August 22, 2009 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  22. Keith in Austin

    Another prime example of the ineptitide of a Government managed program! Let's be sure to hand over our healthcare system too! Allowing the Democrats total control of both Houses and Presidency is like leaving little chicks in c/o wolves!

    August 22, 2009 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  23. Dave in Illinois

    Your government in action. Just wait until they run all health care.

    August 22, 2009 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  24. SD Kev

    This is one of the most pathetic stories I've heard in recent days. As a liberal leaning moderate it's stories like this that make me realize why fiscal conservatives are so critical of the U.S. government. If the government can force corporations to give back bonuses, we should do the same with the VA and if they won't give them back LOCK THE CROOKS UP AND THROW AWAY THE KEY !

    August 22, 2009 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  25. Love ;-)

    Oooooooooo!

    August 22, 2009 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
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