U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff on mistreatment of military families in privatized housing

Democratic U.S. Senate challenger Jon Ossoff speaks to the media at Dunbar Neighborhood Center during Georgia’s Senate runoff elections, Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021, in Atlanta, Georgia. (Branden Camp / AP Photo)

Branden Camp / AP Photo

While U.S. House committee members present their investigation of the Jan. 6 insurrection, U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff of Georgia has been leading an investigative committee in the Senate.

Ossoff recently held his first public hearing as chairman of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

The April 26 hearing dealt with a military housing provider who senators say defrauded the government out of unearned incentive fees and failed to provide necessary maintenance to service members living in conditions with environmental and health risks.

Ossoff joined WABE’s “Morning Edition” to talk about what has come of the hearing and what more he plans to do going forward.

“I’m encouraged by the Army’s initial response, I think suspending the incentive payments to this housing contractor is a promising first step,” said Ossoff. “It’s not going to be an easy problem to solve but I’m going to keep working at it.”

The hearing follows an eight-month investigation into the mistreatment of military families in private housing near Georgia’s Fort Gordon and more than 50 other military bases around the country.

Last year, the military housing contractor responsible, Balfour Beatty, was ordered to pay more than $65 million after pleading guilty to fraud. However, the committee’s investigation shows the mistreatment may have continued after the company pleaded guilty.

Ossoff also took questions on the leaked Supreme Court opinion regarding Roe v. Wade, the likelihood of congressional action on gun control and the January 6 insurrection hearings in the House.