|"This position will provide expert, legal assistance as my subcommittee moves forward with the investigation of the science and management issues that have arisen in the Yucca Mountain Waste Repository Project," Porter said. "After working with Chairman Davis at the full committee, we have decided that any and all resources, including the new special investigator will be invaluable in uncovering the truth surrounding poor management and bad science in both the Department of the Interior and the Department of Energy."
The new staff member's primary focus will be on discovering the depth and magnitude of falsified documents. The special investigator will provide additional resources as the subcommittee continues to investigate the Departments. Chairman Porter expects this employee to be with the Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce and Agency Organization through the end of 2006, at a minimum.
"Real Estate Investment Thrift Savings Act" (H.R. 1578)
The Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) provides one leg of a three-part retirement system for Federal employees under the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS). The other two parts of the retirement system include a defined benefit annuity and Social Security. On April 12, 2005, Chairman Jon Porter introduced H.R. 1578, the "Real Estate Investment Thrift Savings Act." There has been growing interest in expanding the options available to employees who participate in the TSP to include a fund option for investment in real estate investment trusts (REITs). REITs have become an investment vehicle of choice recently for private sector companies when considering expansion of options available within 401(k) packages. As the Federal Government seeks to modernize its recruitment and retention tools to keep pace with the private sector, REITs can be an important tool in accomplishing these goals. This hearing will examine the impact of a REIT option on the TSP and the future impact upon retirement benefits for employees.