Justice Department Watchdog To Investigate Decision To Cancel FBI Headquarters Plan

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The Justice Department’s inspector general will investigate the FBI’s role in dropping plans a decade in the making to move its headquarters to the Washington suburbs, he told Congress in a letter Tuesday.

The inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, told House committee leaders that he is initiating a review of actions at the DOJ and FBI that led to the canceling of the plans in favor of building a smaller replacement for the J. Edgar Hoover Building downtown and dispersing other FBI staff elsewhere.

The review could produce new revelations about the Trump administration’s stunning reversal of bipartisan plans for the development of a new, highly secure campus that would have gotten the bureau out of the fast-deteriorating Hoover building.

Democratic leaders of two committees, Elijah E. Cummings (Md.) and Gerald E. Connolly (Va.) of the Oversight Committee and Peter A. DeFazio (Ore.) and Dina Titus (Nev.) of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, have pressed Horowitz to investigate. They redoubled their efforts after the head of the General Services Administration was found by her agency’s inspector general to have made potentially misleading comments to Congress about the White House’s involvement in the decision-making.

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