OSC Seal

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



      Special Counsel Scott J. Bloch has announced the successful results of the Office of Special Counsel’s (OSC) case backlog resolution project in a new report, noting that he made it a top priority in his first year in office. The report charts the dramatic reduction of the backlog in three OSC divisions in less than a year and delineates the permanent solutions being implemented.

      In a recent letter to the Special Counsel, the Chairman of the Committee on Government Reform Rep. Tom Davis and Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce Chairman Rep. Jon Porter congratulated OSC’s successful efforts to improve services for whistleblowers: “We appreciate the professional seriousness with which you approached these recommendations and reduced existing backlogs in the first year following this report,” the Members wrote. “We continue to be impressed with the sincerity and pragmatism with which you and all your staff approach your jobs. You are providing a great service to the American people and the Federal government by protecting whistleblowers from illegal reprisals.”

      The OSC report responds to a March 2004 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report about OSC historic failure to handle cases prior to Mr. Bloch’s tenure. “Federal employees are the winners in this success story,” Bloch explained. “The leadership and dedicated career staff of OSC have truly achieved a remarkable and noteworthy success by dramatically reducing the Agency’s chronic case backlog in just one year.”

      House Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Tom Davis requested the GAO inquiry in 2003 to assess the independent Agency’s chronic backlog problem from FY 1997 to FY 2003. The GAO Report, “U.S. Office of Special Counsel: Strategy for Reducing Persistent Backlog of Cases Should be Provided to Congress” (GAO 04-36), issued soon after Scott Bloch took office as Special Counsel, found that the Agency had demonstrated a chronic inability to process cases in a timely manner which inevitably led to very large backlogs. The report called for OSC to develop a comprehensive strategy to address the recurrent failures so that federal employee’s whistleblower complaints and other allegations would not wither and become obsolete by the time OSC personnel addressed the complaints.

      On May 17, 2005, Special Counsel Bloch responded to GAO demonstrating tremendous results. Under the new OSC leadership, backlog reductions in three major units were achieved (Intake, Disclosure, and Hatch). The Agency has also put in place sound measures and internal procedures, such as a special unit to address the problem of languishing cases, to maintain adequate case numbers so justice will be served more expeditiously. In the midst of the significant achievement, OSC substantially increased from previous administrations the number of cases that get more intense investigations during the backlog resolution process.


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. 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. For more information please visit our web site at www.osc.gov or call 1-800-872-9855.