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Independent Agencies (121 - 130 of 10,035 items)
Technology Assessment: Municipal freshwater scarcity: Using technology to improve distribution system efficiency and tap nontraditional water sources
GAO-16-474: Published: Apr 29, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 29, 2016.
Water scarcity occurs when the demand for water in a given area approaches or exceeds available water supplies. A water utility facing scarcity may attempt to address it by reducing its demand on existing water supplies, increasing its water supplies, or both. Many mature technologies are available to address both of these areas. For example, a utility could try to improve the efficiency of its di...
U.S. Postal Service: Post Office Changes Suggest Cost Savings, but Improved Guidance, Data, and Analysis Can Inform Future Savings Efforts
GAO-16-385: Published: Apr 29, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 29, 2016.
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) had largely completed Post Office Structure Plan's (POStPlan) implementation prior to a 2014 POStPlan arbitration decision and expected millions in cost savings. Specifically, under POStPlan, USPS planned to reduce hours at about 13,000 post offices (from 8- to 2-, 4-, or 6-hours of retail service a day) and to staff them with employees less costly than postmasters....
Information Security: Opportunities Exist for SEC to Improve Its Controls over Financial Systems and Data
GAO-16-493: Published: Apr 28, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 28, 2016.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) improved its information security by addressing weaknesses previously identified by GAO, including separating the user production network from the internal management network. However, weaknesses continue to limit the effectiveness of other security controls. In particular:While SEC had issued policies and implemented controls based on those policies, i...
Tribal Internet Access: Increased Federal Coordination and Performance Measurement Needed
GAO-16-504T: Published: Apr 27, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 27, 2016.
In January 2016, GAO found that, although all 21 tribes GAO interviewed have some access to high-speed Internet, barriers to increasing access remain. Tribal officials and Internet providers said that high poverty rates among tribes and the high costs of connecting remote tribal villages to core Internet networks limit high-speed Internet availability and access. About half of the tribes GAO inter...
Federal Real Property: Commodity Futures Trading Commission Needs Better Leasing Guidance to Improve Cost-effectiveness
GAO-16-434: Published: Apr 18, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 2016.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) did not make cost-effective decisions consistent with leading government guidance for lease procurement and internal controls when planning for additional space in fiscal years 2008–2015. CFTC began planning for expansion in the fiscal year 2009 time frame—more than a year before the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Act in July 2010. CFTC renewed leas...
Foreign Aid: USAID Generally Complied with Its Antiterrorism Policies and Procedures for Program Assistance for West Bank and Gaza
GAO-16-442: Published: Apr 18, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 2016.
In 2006, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) issued key antiterrorism policies and procedures—known as Mission Order 21 (the order)—to help ensure that program assistance for the West Bank and Gaza would not inadvertently provide support to entities or individuals associated with terrorism. The order, updated in 2007, outlines requirements and procedures for (1) vetting, or i...
Genetically Engineered Crops: USDA Needs to Enhance Oversight and Better Understand Impacts of Unintended Mixing with Other Crops
GAO-16-241: Published: Mar 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 14, 2016.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), have taken steps to regulate genetically-engineered (GE) crops (i.e., crops whose genetic makeup has been modified), but USDA has not updated its regulations to oversee GE crops derived from alternative technologies in which the GE crop developed contains no plant pest DNA. EPA...
Grants Management: Actions Needed to Address Persistent Grant Closeout Timeliness and Undisbursed Balance Issues
GAO-16-362: Published: Apr 14, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 14, 2016.
GAO found approximately $994 million in funding remained in expired grant accounts in the Payment Management System (PMS), operated by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), at the end of fiscal year 2015. PMS identifies expired grant accounts for users as those accounts more than 3 months past their grant end date that have not had payment activity for 9 months. PMS makes payments for...
Nonbank Mortgage Servicers: Existing Regulatory Oversight Could Be Strengthened [Reissued on April 14, 2016]
GAO-16-278: Published: Mar 10, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 11, 2016.
The share of home mortgages serviced by nonbanks increased from approximately 6.8 percent in 2012 to approximately 24.2 percent in 2015 (as measured by unpaid principal balance). However, banks continued to service the remainder (about 75.8 percent). Some market participants GAO interviewed said nonbank servicers' growth increased the capacity for servicing delinquent loans, but they also noted ch...
Disability Insurance: SSA Needs to Better Track Efforts and Evaluate Options to Recover Debt and Deter Potential Fraud
GAO-16-331: Published: Apr 13, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 13, 2016.
In fiscal year 2015, the Social Security Administration (SSA) recovered $857 million in Disability Insurance (DI) overpayments that it erroneously made to beneficiaries; however, SSA is missing opportunities to recover more. More than three-fourths of the recovered overpayments in fiscal year 2015 were collected by withholding all or a portion of a beneficiary's monthly benefits. SSA's policy is t...