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Pentagon Security Chief Cited For Ethics Abuses

Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Steven E. Calvery 600x400

The Pentagon's chief of security has been cited for a range of ethics violations, including using his staff for meal runs and allowing favored employees to play in golf tournaments while on administrative leave.

A highly-redacted report released Monday by the Defense Department's Inspector General's office also charged that Steven Calvery, head of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, arranged to have friends use the agency's firing range and played favoritism with promotions.

Calvery disputed the conclusions of the IG report and his status as head of the FPA was unclear. The IG's report recommended that Michael Rhodes, director of the Pentagon's office of Administration and Management, consider "appropriate action"against Calvery, a former Army helicopter pilot and Secret Service agent who took charge of the PFPA's 1,300 officers in 2006.

Calvery allegedly violated DoD's "Joint Ethics Regulation" by arranging in 2010 for a non-employee to use PFPA's firing range and get weapons training from two PFPA range personnel.

The non-employee's name was redacted, but the IG's report suggested that he may have been a relative by noting that "other family members of PFPA employees were not offered the same benefit."

The IG's report said that Calvery also "improperly authorized the use of administrative leave" to let employees play in annual PFPA golf tournaments and "provided preferential treatment" to a subordinate who was promoted ahead of others with better qualifications.

Calvery allegedly "selected the subordinate for promotion based on their relationship rather than on the subordinate's experience or scope of responsibilities."

In his response to the allegations, Calvery said subordinates would occasionally get him lunch and coffee but "only when he was really busy."

"I would hope if they felt uncomfortable doing it, they would tell me," Calvery said. "And if they did feel uncomfortable, then that would be okay. You know, they wouldn’t have to do it, and they don’t have to do it now."

Calvery said he authorized administrative leave for 100-150 employees to play in the golf tournament as a way to build "espirit de corps" in the PFPA.

On the allegation of promotional favoritism, Calvery said he felt it was his "prerogative to select for promotions" and the individual in question was a loyal employee "who does his job in an exemplary manner, and I thought he needed to be promoted."

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Richard Sisk Pentagon
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