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Ernst Calls Out ATF Bureaucrats Posing as Law Enforcement to Scam Taxpayers, Waste Millions

WASHINGTON — According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) whistleblowers and confirmed by an Office of Special Counsel report, the ATF has routinely misclassified administrative positions as law enforcement jobs, improperly costing the federal agency millions in pay and enhanced benefits over a five-year span.

To fight back against the improper use of taxpayer dollars and to defund bureaucrats, today, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) is calling on Inspector General Michael Horowitz to work with the whistleblowers to fully investigate the issue, recover misspent funds, and hold bad actors accountable.

In the letter, Senator Ernst writes: “…I remain concerned about the limited scope of the remediating actions.  According to the whistleblowers, OSC’s report ‘did not adequately capture the extent of ATF’s illegal practices or the full impact of the harm.’ In fact, the whistleblowers believe ‘there were many more misclassified positions than were captured in [OPM’s] audit and that the agency significantly underreported the waste directly and tangentially associated with the widespread practice of misclassifying positions,’ including failing to account for the impact of the wrongdoing on ATF’s non-law enforcement personnel.

“…more work remains to be done on this important issue to ensure the ATF’s culture of gross mismanagement of taxpayer funds is fully examined and remediated to stamp out any willingness to abuse the public trust which may exist amongst ATF bureaucrats.

“The American people deserve to know the full extent of the ATF bureaucrats’ dishonest dealings.  It is incumbent upon all public servants to act with the utmost levels of professionalism but when bureaucrats abuse the public trust it is the responsibility of watchdogs to hold the bad actors accountable for their malfeasance.”

Read the full letter here.