OSC Seal

 U.S. Office of Special Counsel
 1730 M Street, N.W., Suite 218
 Washington, D.C. 20036-4505


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 3/21/05                                                                                     
CONTACT: CATHY DEEDS, 202-254-3600

       WASHINGTON -- Today, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) announced the settlement of its Petition for Disciplinary Action filed against Mr. Kelvin Robinson, formerly employed by the District of Columbia as Chief of Staff to Mayor Anthony Williams. OSC’s petition, filed with the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), charged that Mr. Robinson, while an employee of the District of Columbia, violated the Hatch Act during a campaign rally on August 8, 2002, by specifically asking D.C. employees, many of whom were his subordinates, to volunteer to work on the Mayor’s re-election campaign. Additionally OSC’s petition charged that, in or about May 2002, Mr. Robinson, personally and/or through subordinates, solicited political contributions by asking individuals to purchase tickets to the Kennedy-King dinner, a political fundraiser for the District of Columbia Democratic State Committee.

       Mr. Robinson announced his voluntary resignation as Chief of Staff on July 7, 2004, effective August 1, 2004. OSC filed its petition seeking his removal from the District of Columbia on July 9, 2004. Under the terms of the settlement agreement, Mr. Robinson agreed not to seek or accept employment with the District of Columbia for a period of two years, beginning August 1, 2004. In return, OSC moved to dismiss its complaint against Mr. Robinson.

      The Hatch Act prohibits most District of Columbia and federal employees from seeking nomination or election to a partisan political office; soliciting, accepting or receiving political contributions; using their official authority to interfere with the results of an election; and engaging in political activity while on duty, among other things. OSC provides advisory opinions on the Hatch Act and also enforces the provisions of the Act by filing petitions for disciplinary action.

      District of Columbia and federal employees who are charged with violations of the Act are entitled to a hearing before the MSPB. Under the Act, the presumptive penalty for a violation is removal from employment. However, upon a unanimous vote of its members, the MSPB can mitigate the penalty to no less than a 30-day suspension without pay. Employees have the right to appeal the MSPB’s decision to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.            


The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) is an independent investigative and prosecutorial agency and operates as a secure channel for disclosures of whistleblower complaints and abuse of authority. Its primary mission is to safeguard the merit system in Federal employment by protecting Federal employees and applicants from prohibited personnel practices, especially retaliation for whistleblowing. OSC also has jurisdiction over the Hatch Act and the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA). For more information please visit our web site at www.osc.gov or call 1-800-872-9855.