VA hospital chief draws $179G salary despite missing 80 days over 1 year

DeWayne Hamlin, the top official of the Department of Veterans Affairs' Puerto Rico hospital, was absent from the hospital some 80 days in a one-year period, according to documents obtained by the Washington Examiner.

Hamlin was paid $179,700 despite being absent from the hospital approximately one in three business days last year, according to "delegation of authority" documents by which he temporarily transferred his job responsibilities to deputies.

In April 2014, for example, he was absent from the 10th to the 18th, then from the 24th to the 27th. He also submitted a delegation document saying he would be gone the 28th and 29th. For part of that time, he was traveling to Florida, where he previously lived. He was arrested by Florida police while sitting in his car at 2:00 a.m. on the 26th.

Police said that he smelled of alcohol, twice refused to take a breath test, and that they found oxycodone for which he did not have a prescription. He reportedly refused to say where he got the painkiller.