Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017
This bill establishes in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection, to be headed by the Assistant Secretary for Accountability and Whistleblower Protection.
The VA shall develop criteria to promote supervisory protection of whistle-blowers and provide supervisors with related training.
The bill revises VA authority to remove certain employees or senior executives for reasons of misconduct or performance, including by permitting such individuals to be demoted or suspended.
The VA: (1) shall reduce the federal annuity of a removed individual who is convicted of a felony that influenced his or her performance while employed in such position, and (2) may reduce the federal annuity of a retired individual who was convicted of such a felony but who left the VA before final action was taken.
The VA may recoup an award, a bonus, or relocation expenses paid to an employee under specified circumstances.
The VA may directly appoint medical center directors and Veterans Integrated Service Network directors.
The bill revises time periods for adverse action reviews with respect to physicians, dentists, podiatrists, chiropractors, optometrists, registered nurses, physician assistants, and expanded-function dental auxiliaries.
The VA shall: (1) assess the effect of the enactment of this bill on the hiring, promotion, retention, and productivity of individuals in senior executive positions; and (2) collect information on the outcomes and effectiveness of disciplinary actions carried out during the three-year period ending on the date of enactment of this bill.