Watchdogs would get more funding under Biden’s plan

By Kevin Bogardus | 03/12/2024 01:21 PM EDT

The president has proposed multimillion-dollar budget increases for inspectors general at energy and environmental agencies.

Energy Department, Interior Department, EPA headquarters.

The Energy Department, Interior Department and EPA headquarters. Claudine Hellmuth/E&E News (DOE and EPA); Pamela King/E&E News (Interior)

Internal watchdogs at energy and environmental agencies would see substantial improvement in their respective budgets under President Joe Biden’s fiscal blueprint released Monday.

Inspectors general at EPA and the Energy and Interior departments are in the unique position to ensure the effectiveness and integrity of the Biden administration’s handling of the president’s signature climate and infrastructure laws. Billions of dollars are flowing to those agencies at a rapid pace under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act, escalating the risk of fraud and waste for government operations.

The inspectors general argue they need more resources to keep an eye on those funds as they mount audits and investigations to uncover any shenanigans. Biden’s fiscal 2025 budget request would provide the watchdogs with more cash to complete their work.


The Department of Energy’s Office of Inspector General would receive $152.5 million from the fiscal plan, according to DOE’s budget-in-brief document. That includes $149 million for the office’s base appropriation and $3.5 million for oversight of the Puerto Rico Energy Resilience Fund.