Former Hawaii official and veteran accused of wrongdoing in Washington

The AP reports that Raymond Jefferson, a former Army officer, White House fellow under President Bush and a deputy director at the  Hawai’i Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism under Governor Lingle, resigned as head of the U.S. Veterans Employment and Training Service after he was accused of procurement abuses:

A former deputy director at the Hawaii Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism resigned his post as an assistant secretary at the Department of Labor after an internal investigation found that he improperly steered federal contracts to friends and former colleagues.

Raymond Jefferson, who headed the department’s Veterans Employment and Training Service since 2009, used his position to coerce or intimidate other employees to make the awards without open competition, according to a July 21 report by the agency’s acting inspector general, Daniel Petrole.

Jefferson resigned his post on Tuesday, Labor Department spokesman Carl Fillichio said.

A former Army officer who lost all five fingers on his left hand when a hand grenade detonated prematurely during Special Forces training, Jefferson was tapped by President Barack Obama to head the office that helps veterans find jobs and employment training programs.

The report said that Jefferson and other lower ranking officials engaged in conduct “which reflects a consistent disregard of federal procurement rules and regulations, federal ethics principles and the proper stewardship of appropriated dollars.”


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