So we are to trust the CDC to tell us the truth about their vaccine schedule injuring our children when they can't be trusted not to steal stuff from their own offices?
Feds probe missing CDC gear Theft suspected in some cases
By CRAIG SCHNEIDER
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 07/12/07
Federal investigators will look into the disappearance of $22 million worth of scientific equipment, computers and other items from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
An audit of procedures and an investigation into allegations of theft at the Atlanta-based agency will be conducted by the Inspector General's office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
The inquiry was requested by a congressional oversight committee as a consequence of its "troubling" findings last month.
"A thorough audit will help stop the bleeding of taxpayer-owned property at CDC," said U.S. Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) in a prepared statement Wednesday. "In cases of theft, it will also tell us what happened to the thieves."
CDC officials said they have accounted for about $9 million of the $22 million in missing goods in recent weeks as a result of efforts to track down lost items and improve accountability.
The House Committee on Energy and Commerce specifically raised concerns about a suspected "insider" burglary of $500,000 in new computers, and millions of dollars worth of other items missing or unaccounted for since the last audit of the agency in 1995.
"The scope of property mismanagement and outright theft at CDC is both astonishing and baffling," said Barton, the ranking Republican on the committee.
Inspector General Daniel Levinson wrote Barton on June 25, "As requested, we will audit CDC's controls over property, such as laptops and scientific equipment, and determine whether CDC has adequately implemented the recommendations in the prior report. We will separately investigate the allegations [you] identified."
The inspector general's office declined to comment further on the inquiries.
Between fiscal 2004 and 2006, there were 61 investigations into the theft or disappearance of agency property. No arrests or disciplinary action resulted from those investigations, said CDC spokesman Tom Skinner on Wednesday. He said several investigations are ongoing.
Skinner said much of the equipment was discovered missing during a major reorganization in the agency. He said staff are using new computer programs to better track items.
He said the CDC faces tough challenges in managing property as an agency with a nearly $9 billion budget and 15,000 employees. "We look forward to what the inspector general has to say, and ... steps we can take to get better at property inventory and management," he said.
"We take security very seriously."