Oil and Natural Gas Leases Must Be Fully Investigated (Rep. Tom Davis)

Too much money is at stake for the Oversight and Government Reform Committee not to continue the investigation of the Interior Department's flawed 1998 and 1999 oil and natural gas leases.

Along with the Interior Department Inspector General and the Government Accountability Office, we have spent hundreds of hours uncovering mismanagement, ethical lapses and possible criminal conduct. We need to bring this to a positive conclusion for the American taxpayer. We have already lost $1 billion because of Interior's mistakes and may lose as much as $9.8 billion or more over the life of the leases.  Some of the very people responsible are still in their jobs, and one has actually been promoted. The fundamental flaws in the organization still exist. I hope Chairman Waxman (D-Calif.) does everything possible to bring this matter to a satisfactory conclusion.