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Tierney to head security subcommittee

The Daily ItemPEABODY ? Known as a staunch advocate of government spending oversight, U.S. Rep. John F. Tierney this week was named chairman of the Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.The latter is the primary investigative committee in the U.S. House of Representatives.Tierney, a Salem Democrat, has been a vocal critic of government waste and unchecked spending for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.”I appreciate my colleagues’ confidence and assume this position with full realization of the responsibility entailed in being the chairman of this important subcommittee,” the congressman said. “For far too long, Congress has not provided the kind of oversight warranted on a series of foreign policy and defense issues.”According to Tierney, with the U.S. currently engaged in military and reconstruction efforts involving expenditures of hundreds of billions of dollars, we must be vigilant about making sure American taxpayers know whether the intent of laws and spending bills are being followed and if their tax dollars are being spent wisely.The congressman has been a strong proponent of the Truman Commission bill that echoes then-Sen. Harry Truman’s successful effort proposed during World War II to establish a special congressional oversight to investigate how defense contracts were awarded and managed. The newer proposal was designed to study the bidding, contracting, and auditing standards in the issuance of government contracts; the oversight procedures and forms of payment and safeguards against money laundering; the accountability of contractors and government officials involved in procurement; and, the allocation of contracts to foreign companies and small business.Tierney said the subcommittee has broad jurisdiction and is part of a larger oversight committee that is chaired by Rep. Henry A. Waxman. The committee’s task is “to restore the legislative branch’s constitutional responsibilities in this arena,” he said.Tierney also continues to serve as a member on the Education and Labor Committee, and on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence by appointment of the Speaker of the House.

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