Bennet, Gardner Push Amendment to Find Where Money for VA Hospital Went

Report Will Look into Mismanaged Denver VA Medical Center, Other Facilities

Washington, DC - Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner today offered an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 to look into construction contracts for major medical facilities at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The report will determine how projects have gone over budget and where the money has gone on mismanaged projects such as the Denver Replacement Medical Center.

"As we continue to move forward with construction of the Denver Medical Facility, we need more clarity and accountability on what went wrong, how, and when," Bennet said. "This investigation will help us get to the bottom of where this money went and learn what exactly we need to change so this never happens again. It can also help us put in place a plan to ensure the hospital in Aurora is completed for veterans in Colorado and across the Rocky Mountain region."

"The cost overruns, delays, and incompetence of the VA in building its Denver Hospital have been well documented," Gardner said. "This amendment will help us discover how this project became a catastrophe and how we can prevent these problems from occurring on future projects. Colorado veterans deserve to know what went wrong in Denver, and they deserve to see those responsible for delays held accountable."

The amendment directs the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct a study on the administration and oversight of VA contracts for the design and construction of major medical facility projects. It will examine the VA's design models, the agency's change order process, and how the agency compares to private-sector best practices.

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