Department of Agriculture (61 - 70 of 2,039 items)
Crop Insurance: Reducing Subsidies for Highest Income Participants Could Save Federal Dollars with Minimal Effect on the Program
GAO-15-356: Published: Mar 18, 2015. Publicly Released: Mar 18, 2015.
About 1 percent of crop insurance participants would have been affected if premium subsidies had been reduced for the highest income participants from 2009 through 2013, based on GAO's analysis of data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) and Farm Service Agency (FSA). The highest income participants were those with incomes that exceeded limits in place for...
Crop Insurance: In Areas with Higher Crop Production Risks, Costs Are Greater, and Premiums May Not Cover Expected Losses
GAO-15-215: Published: Feb 9, 2015. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2015.
The federal government's crop insurance costs are substantially higher in areas with higher crop production risks (e.g., drought risk) than in other areas. In the higher risk areas, government costs per dollar of crop value for 2005 through 2013 were over two and a half times the costs in other areas. The figure below shows the costs during this period. However, the U.S. Department of Agriculture'...
African Growth and Opportunity Act: Lessons Learned from Other Countries' Trade Arrangements with Sub-Saharan Africa
GAO-15-393R: Published: Feb 25, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2015.
In 2014, the White House proposed a strategy for investing in African trade. One part of the five-part strategy --Renew and Update the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) to Increase Market Access Opportunities for Africa--consisted of four specific recommendations:Approve a long term extension of AGOA.Expand AGOA's product coverage.Improve rules of origin.Update eligibility criteria and rev...
Hazardous Waste: Agencies Should Take Steps to Improve Information on USDA's and Interior's Potentially Contaminated Sites
GAO-15-35: Published: Jan 16, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 13, 2015.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of the Interior (Interior) have identified many contaminated and potentially contaminated sites, but neither agency has a complete inventory. As of April 2014, USDA had identified 1,491 contaminated sites and many potentially contaminated sites, including landfills and shooting ranges. However, USDA does not have a reliable, centralized...
Nutrition Assistance: Additional Guidance Could Assist States in Reducing Risk of Online Sale of Infant Formula
GAO-15-94: Published: Dec 11, 2014. Publicly Released: Jan 12, 2015.
In recent years, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has more closely aligned the amount of formula it authorizes states to provide through the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) with current nutrition science and the nutritional needs of participating infants. These changes were also made, in part, to encourage and support breastfeeding. Specifical...
Federal Food Safety Oversight: Additional Actions Needed to Improve Planning and Collaboration
GAO-15-180: Published: Dec 18, 2014. Publicly Released: Dec 18, 2014.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have taken steps to implement GPRA Modernization Act of 2010 (GPRAMA) requirements but could more fully address crosscutting food safety efforts. For example, GPRAMA requires agencies to describe in their strategic and performance planning how they are working with other agencies to achieve their goals...
Indian Affairs: Bureau of Indian Education Needs to Improve Oversight of School Spending
GAO-15-121: Published: Nov 13, 2014. Publicly Released: Nov 13, 2014.
Unlike public schools, Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) schools receive almost all of their funding from federal sources. BIE directly operates about a third of its schools, and tribes operate two-thirds. According to BIE data, all of the BIE schools received a total of about $830 million in fiscal year 2014: about 75 percent from the Department of the Interior (Interior), 24 percent from the Depa...
Food Safety: FDA and USDA Should Strengthen Pesticide Residue Monitoring Programs and Further Disclose Monitoring Limitations
GAO-15-38: Published: Oct 7, 2014. Publicly Released: Nov 6, 2014.
The Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) most recent data from 2008 through 2012 show that pesticide residue violation rates in 10 selected fruits and vegetables were low, but FDA's approach to monitoring for violations, which targets commodities it has identified as high risk, has limitations. Among other things, GAO found that FDA tests relatively few targeted (i.e., non-generalizable) samples f...
USDA Contracting: Further Actions Needed to Strengthen Oversight of Contracts for Professional Services
GAO-14-819: Published: Sep 29, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 29, 2014.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Departmental Management, Food and Nutrition Service, and Forest Service did not select contract types preferred by federal regulations, agency policies, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance, for about two-thirds (about $783 million) of the funds obligated to contracts for professional, administrative, and management support services (profes...
Managing for Results: Selected Agencies Need to Take Additional Efforts to Improve Customer Service
GAO-15-84: Published: Oct 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 24, 2014.
GAO reviewed the customer service standards at Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Forest Service, Federal Student Aid (FSA), the National Park Service (NPS), and two services in the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA)—disability compensation and Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI). GAO found that none of the agencies' standards included all of the key elements of customer service standard...