Gov. Wolf to sign bill that gives more power, authority to the Office of Inspector General

DAUPHIN COUNTY, Pa.–A bill that makes the Office of Inspector General a staple in Pennsylvania government is expected to be signed later this week by Gov. Tom Wolf.

The soon-to-be law, known as Senate Bill 527, was authored by Sen. Ryan Aument and Rep. Mindy Fee, both Republicans.

More power and authority will be added to the State Inspector General’s description but the office’s core mission of conducting investigations into fraud, waste and abuse within the administration of state government and welfare benefits will not change.

“The Office of the Inspector General plays an important role within state government and this bipartisan compromise will bolster this vital executive office,” Gov. Wolf said in a release. “I want to thank Senator Aument, Democratic and Republican members of the State Government committees, and their staffs for their willingness to work together on amending this bill to ensure the OIG can serve the executive branch and the taxpayers with efficiency and accountability.”

Once the law is enacted, the Office of the Inspector General will have subpoena power and limited law enforcement authority, according to a release sent by Sen. Aument’s office on Monday. His official statement on Gov. Wolf’s decision to sign the bill can be seen below:

“This new law will go a long way to show the people of Pennsylvania that their government leaders genuinely care about finding and eliminating waste, fraud and abuse in state government programs and services.

I am proud to have worked with Rep. Mindy Fee who sponsored this legislation in the House and who has diligently worked to be a champion for legislation that values taxpayers and improves government.

I also applaud Governor Wolf for his willingness to compromise throughout this process and sign into law an idea 30 years in the making that began with Governor Bob Casey’s Gubernatorial Executive Order in 1987.

At a time when our citizens are divided on so many important issues, this is one thing we can all agree on – cheaters should never win.”

The legislation also says that the Inspector General will be appointed by the governor, serving simultaneously with his/her term in office unless removed, and will submit an annual report to the members of the House and Senate detailing the work of the office.

The Office of Inspector General was first created by Executive Order in 1987.