Oversight panel will focus on IRS, Medicare, new chairman says

Oversight panel will focus on IRS, Medicare, new chairman says
© Greg Nash

Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.), the new chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee's oversight panel, said the subcommittee's priorities in the 115th Congress will include combating fraud in Medicare and Social Security, increasing IRS accountability, and protecting people from identity theft.

“I intend to be fair but relentless in exposing government malfeasance,” Buchanan said in a news release Monday. “Fraud, waste and abuse will not be tolerated. Government exists to work for the people, not the other way around.”

Buchanan was named chairman of the oversight subcommittee on Friday. The Florida congressman previously had served as the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee's human resources subcommittee.

The panel has the ability to investigate issues relating to the IRS, healthcare and entitlement programs. Last year, it held hearings on topics including investigations of healthcare fraud, the tax-filing season and the IRS's handling of civil asset forfeiture cases.

“I look forward to chairing this important watchdog panel that will monitor government’s largest federal agencies and programs,” Buchanan said. “I intend to make sure these programs are accountable and working for the people.”