Billion-dollar ISIS fight gets inspector general

The U.S.-led fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is getting its own inspector general to oversee government spending as costs top the $1 billion mark. 

Jon T. Rymer, the Pentagon's inspector general, will serve as the lead inspector general for Operation Inherent Resolve, his office announced Monday. 

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Rymer will submit biannual reports to Congress, with the first to come April 2015. 

The Pentagon recently surpassed the $1 billion spending mark against ISIS since it began airstrikes in August. 

"As of Dec. 11, 2014, the total cost of operations related to [ISIS] since kinetic operations started on Aug. 8, 2014 is $1.02 billion and the average daily cost is $8.1 million,” Pentagon spokesman Bill Urban said Monday.

That figure does not include the deployment of troops that were ordered to Iraq in June. 

“I welcome the opportunity to work with my colleagues at the Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development Offices of Inspector General to leverage our existing resources as we begin this critical mission,” Rymer said in a statement. 

“The oversight efforts of Operation Inherent Resolve by our three agencies will ensure proper stewardship of taxpayer dollars,” added USAID Deputy Inspector General Michael G. Carroll.

This is the first time there will be an inspector general for an "overseas contingency operation," the Pentagon Office of Inspector General said in a statement. 

The U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan each had their own special inspector generals to examine the use of taxpayer funds in reconstruction projects, the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction and Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction respectively. 

Rymer was appointed by Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency Chair Phyllis Fong on Dec. 17. 

He appointed State Department Inspector General Steve A. Linick as his associate inspector general.

“We look forward to working with Lead Inspector General Rymer as we work toward the goal of providing effective, independent and comprehensive oversight of Operation Inherent Resolve,” Linick said.