Loose Lips

House Oversight Committee Probing Gandhi, Former Employees Say

The U.S. House committee tasked with oversight of the District government is taking a close look at the D.C. Chief Financial Officer Nat Gandhi's office, according to former OCFO employees.

The attorney for Eric Payne, the former contracting officer who has sued the city over allegations that he was fired for resisting political pressure over the lottery contract, says in recent court records that the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee "has launched a probe" of Gandhi and his office.

Payne declined to discuss details of the probe, but said that he's grateful that federal authorities, including the FBI and the House, "have decided to look at the highly suspect actions of district officials."

The FBI's been investigating the lottery contract since at least early this summer. The Post also recently reported that the FBI is looking into the OCFO's commercial real estatate tax division.

Another former OCFO employee, who asked not to be named, has had phone conversations with House oversight staff recently and is scheduled to meet them in the near future, the former employee said. The former employee added that the committee staff's interests in Gandhi appeared to be wide-ranging.

"I think they're looking at the entire ball of wax," the former employee says, indicating that the committee staff is interested in learning about the lottery deal, the commercial tax issues, and other topics.

A staffer for the committee said a spokesman would not be available until Tuesday. Ditto for Gandhi's office.

Oversight committee Chairman Darrell Issa, a Republican from California, has been an unexpected ally of the District in the last two years. He's promoted budget autonomy and has opened the door to looking at a commuter tax. But the committee has also looked into Gray administration's hiring practices, and issued a finger-wagging report related to the hiring of former nuisance candidate Sulaimon Brown.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • truth hurts

    Recent House Oversight probes involving allegations of wrongdoing by DC govt officials have been comparable to recent OIG probes: half assed.

  • mizwillis

    @LL & MM: .....finger wagging report???

  • Ward-8

    As I have said numerious time,Ghandi should have been fired years ago, under his watch millions of tax payers money have been stolen or mis-appropirated and in every instance he has shifted blame and or fired a low level employee. When anything under his watch go wrong, its not his fault, when he shows a surplus he was hiding or give the somke and mirror view on how outstanding and valueable he is,The Mayor and the Council continue to kiss his ring and that other valuable asset of a person, wakeup folks!

  • DC=DistrictofCorruption

    Ghandi is the insider who panders to corrupt officials in his bid to maintain control, or he is being kept inside DC city government to keep tabs on them or undermine the city governing structure. Why else has has he made himself "indispensable" to too many of the DC elected by illegally hiding and shifting funds? And why is he allowed to interpret legislation? Isn't that the job of the Courts? Those who continue to support Ghandi are mislead. They are likely indebted to him or have willingly or unwittingly partnered with him in crime. No one but Catania has spoken out against him. Wake up, folks. Ghandi is the insider that will bring the current DC city government down. It will be return to Control Board.

  • DCObserver

    To quote another Gandhi, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."

    Resign and cooperate before you are fired and charged.

  • mizwillis

    @DCO: Not so sure the change you recommend is what this Ghandi 'wishes to see'.

  • http://distcurm.blogspot.com/ IMGoph

    jesus h. christ, hardly a single one of you people can spell the man's name right.

    GANDHI

    not

    GHANDI

    is it that hard to figure out? you all look rather ignorant if you can't even get that detail correct. it's spelled out for you right there in the article!

  • mizwillis

    @IMGoph: Oh My Goph: The 'missing h' means WE'RE ignorant?? What difference does it make???? You obviously know of whom we speak/write.

    You need to find something else about which to obsess. How about not using small letters when referring to Jesus; or maybe NOT putting THAT 'h' in his name.

  • http://distcurm.blogspot.com/ IMGoph

    mizwillis: It's not a missing h, it's a transposed one. Everyone misspelling the name put it in the wrong place. See what I wrote above.

  • Ward-8

    IMGOPH, in your rant, you remind me of that old adage"Artificial intelligence is no match for natural Stupidly",

  • seeseehpounder

    Thanks for clearing that up for everybody @IMGhop. You have established yourself as a true douche nozzle.

  • tsw2

    The real question here is why Gandhi is even still in office: his department was responsible for defrauding DC taxpayers over $30 million in property tax embezzlement - OVER FIVE YEARS AGO. He obviously has friends in the right places: The DC Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce, not to mention real estate monopolists & owners of baseball parks.

    I say it's high time (if not overdue) for a federal probe. Good luck with that.

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