Democratic leaders of the House Oversight and Reform Committee are questioning the transfer from OPM to DoD of responsibility for conducting background investigations for almost all agencies—a part of the administration’s reorganization plan for OPM that is proceeding even as disputes remain over the other elements of that plan.
The transfer of what has been known as the National Background Investigations Bureau within OPM to a renamed Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency in DoD—along with the in-house and contractor employees and the existing contracts with other agencies—may not be on track for completion by the September 30 goal, a letter to OPM says.
Further, “DoD officials have also reportedly expressed concerns about whether a new artificial intelligence system that is being adopted for periodic vetting would be as effective as in-person investigations,” they wrote.
They asked for a briefing as well as documentation on agreements and other preparations being made, an assessment of employees’ readiness to assume their new responsibilities, projected costs, and more. Such letters commonly are precursors to congressional hearings.