Senior federal rail official resigns over questions about ‘outside work,’ Transportation Department says
The deputy administrator of the nation’s top railroad safety agency has resigned after allegations were raised about “outside work” he took on while employed as a senior federal official, the Transportation Department said Saturday.
For weeks, the department had been facing media questions about the official, Heath Hall, a public relations professional and political consultant who served as a spokesman for a sheriff’s office in Mississippi before — and, apparently, sometimes during — his time in Washington at the Federal Railroad Administration.
A department spokesman said Wednesday that Hall had requested a leave of absence in January “so that he could address an urgent family matter.”
Daniel Stevens, executive director of the Campaign for Accountability, an ethics group, said last week that Hall lacked any experience “for the critical job of overseeing America’s rail network” and also appears to have been “holding down a second job as a Mississippi public relations consultant in violation of federal law.”