Statement of Scott Amey, General Counsel, Project On Government Oversight:
Today, the Department of Defense Office of Inspector General released its report highlighting ethics violations by Regina Dugan, former director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The report was prompted by the Project On Government Oversight, which had expressed concerns about Ms. Dugans business dealings.
The case of Regina Dugan shows that the government needs stronger laws and rules to prevent and punish actual or apparent conflicts of interest. No matter if it’s personal dealings or a competitive advantage obtained when people go through the revolving door, the government is often unable to hold people and companies accountable. The Dugan case basically ended with the DoD IG declaring, “no harm, no foul.” With the government’s acceptance of such practices and its continued reliance on contractors,we don’t see a decline in these kinds of questionable dealings in the near future.