DENVER — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' internal watchdog issued more than 1,500 reports between 2010 and 2014 but not one focused on the agency's unfinished hospital in Aurora.

The Denver Post reported Friday that the lack of oversight by the VA Office of Inspector General follows years of warning about rising costs at the project.

Federal lawmakers asked the office to look at it on at least two occasions but were refused. According to office officials and congressional correspondence, the Office of Inspector General didn't take action because of a legal battle between the prime contractor, Kiewit-Turner, and the VA.

The case was settled in December. An investigation is now planned now lawmakers say it's too little, too late.

The hospital is expected to cost $1.73 billion.