[Excerpt] This semiannual report of the Office of Inspector General (OIG) details some of our most significant accomplishments for the period April 1 - September 30, 1998. During this period, the OIG focused its audit and investigative resources on activities that support accomplishment of the goals established in our strategic plan. These goals reflect the OIG vision to provide the Department of Labor (DOL) and Congress with quality information, recommendations, and technical assistance. Particularly noteworthy during this reporting period have been our accomplishments in:
- identifying and effecting the return to the Government of $6.1 million in employment and training funds improperly held by a grantee;
- identifying an effective mechanism to increase the distribution of millions of dollars in back wages owed to workers that are held in trust by the Department;
- identifying ways to enhance the Mine Safety and Health Administration's regional coal mine safety and health inspections program;
- identifying and calling attention to the problems faced early next year by the Unemployment Insurance System as a result of the Year 2000 problem;
- providing consultation assistance to DOL agencies in their implementation of the Government Performance and Results Act and the Information Technology Management and Reform Act;
- uncovering fraud against DOL’s unemployment and disability compensation programs;
- combating labor racketeering in unions and the workplace through successful indictments and convictions in the areas of employee benefit plans, labor-management relations, and internal union affairs; and
- calling attention to legislative changes needed to improve aspects of the Department’s pension, workers’ compensation, and program evaluation functions.
My staff and I are committed to effecting positive change, reducing vulnerabilities, and contributing to the Department’s achievement of its own strategic goals. I look forward to continuing to work effectively with the Secretary and DOL staff at all levels in our common goal of ensuring the effectiveness, efficiency, and integrity of the programs that serve and protect American workers and retirees.