PORTLAND, Ore. — The former head of the Bonneville Power Administration said Wednesday that he did not make the specific decisions that are the focus of a U.S. Department of Energy’s investigation into hiring violations at the agency.
In a written statement, BPA’s former administrator, Steve Wright, apologized for the violations, some of which occurred during his tenure.
Wright, now the general manager at the Chelan County Public Utility District, said BPA’s actions were for the most part “well intended and not malicious.”
An inspector general report found widespread and pervasive discrimination in hiring veterans.
Wright said he also had no knowledge of the retaliation against whistleblowers at the agency.
He said he was never questioned during the investigation.
Wright took over BPA’s helm in 2000 and retired in January.
The BPA markets power from 31 federal dams in the Columbia Basin and manages much of the region’s power grid.
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