Audit blast BPA hiring and promotion practices

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PORTLAND — The U.S. Department of Energy has released a highly critical audit of the human resources activities at Bonneville Power Administration, saying the agency's hiring and promotion practices are ineffective.

The audit revealed pervasive misapplications and departures from federal hiring guidelines and laws.

The Oregonian newspaper reports many of the specific problems were identified as such in the agency's 2010 audit. The 2013 audit said the problems have gotten worse.

Major violations were found in more than half the hiring cases reviewed, with applicants either being "erroneously disqualified or mis-qualified."

Portland-based BPA is the region's biggest utility. It sells power from 31 hydroelectric dams to 140 publicly owned utilities, and operates the bulk of the region's electric grid.