Types of Control

Since September 11, 2001, US officials have been diligently working to take measures to prevent such a tragedy from ever happening again. The FBI has significant responsibility for investigating terrorist movements in the US and apprehending potential terrorists before a tragedy occurs. But many FBI agents are facing a dilemma they never envisioned—financial difficulties. For example, one FBI agent, a 34 year old law school graduate and former marine captain assigned to New York City must live more than 40 miles from his office. He cannot afford to live near his work on a salary of $60,000. Another agent left his $80,000 year job in Miami to join the FBI, and was assigned to San Diego. His $58,000 salary does not cover the housing expenses in that area, and thus he lives nearly two hours from his work. In serious debt, he may not be able to afford being an FBI agent much longer.

Many fear that these agents – particularly those who live in Boston, New York City, San Francisco, and other high cost of living areas – who are in deep debt, may become vulnerable to corruption – which could threaten national security. At the heart of the problem is that a new FBI agent starts at a base salary of around $50,000. After 5 years of service, an agent could make over $70,000. But that is not enough for the high cost areas. In Richmond, VA, for example, housing can be 50% less than in the high cost areas.

A survey of FBI agents revealed that more than 7,700 agents indicate their financial situation is “dangerously unstable”. Many have had to cash out their retirement accounts.

Assume that you are the Director of the FBI. This information has just been given to you. What would you do?

  1. Explain your reasoning in a thorough Position Paper.
  2. Describe the type(s) of control that are portrayed in the case. Give specific examples.
  3. Would some types of control be more important than others in this situation?

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