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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: December 19, 2017 09:49 AM
From: Senator Scott Wagner
To: All Senate members
Subject: Making Inspector General Reports Public
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) was created in 1979 within the Department of Transportation. Since 1987, the OIG oversees all executive agencies. Earlier this year, thanks to Senator Aument and others, the OIG became an independent office through Act 29, which went into effect in September.

Governor Wolf praised the legislation, stating the law will “ensure the OIG can serve the executive branch and the taxpayers with efficiency and accountability."

Despite claims for greater accountability, the governor may pick and choose which reports shall be made public if he is the one who requested the investigation in the first place. However, these reports are not compiled on the governor’s personal dime by a private investigator – they are the result of taxpayer resources being utilized to look into a specific matter.

For example, the OIG published their findings of the cheating scandal at the Pennsylvania State Police Academy. Despite the embarrassing and damning report, tax dollars were used to put together the investigation so the report was made public (and rightfully so).

That is why I will introduce legislation that will require any report requested of the Inspector General by an elected official to be made public. The legislation will also require any report issued in 2017 to be made public.

If an elected official requests a report from the OIG, that report must be available to those individuals who funded it – the taxpayers. If elected officials want to keep an investigation out of taxpayers’ view, then they should use their own resources.

No Pennsylvania official should have the ability to use a public office as a private investigation service.

Introduced as SB1018