Congress (31 - 40 of 937 items)
Older Americans: Continuing Care Retirement Communities Can Provide Benefits, but Not Without Some Risk
GAO-10-904T: Published: Jul 21, 2010. Publicly Released: Jul 21, 2010.
This testimoney discusses continuing care retirement communities (CCRC), the risks they and their residents face, and their regulation. A growing population of older Americans is seeking options for ensuring that their assets and income in retirement will cover the cost of their housing and health care needs. One option for meeting these long-term care needs is to enter a CCRC, which aims to provi...
State-Level Information on Negative Home Equity and Loan Performance in the Nonprime Mortgage Market
GAO-10-633R: Published: May 14, 2010. Publicly Released: Jun 14, 2010.
The decline of home prices in many parts of the country has left millions of homeowners with negative home equity, meaning that their outstanding mortgage balances exceed the current value of their homes. As we reported to you previously, a substantial proportion of borrowers with active nonprime mortgages (including subprime and Alt-A loans) had negative equity in their homes as of June 30, 2009...
Poorly Performing Nursing Homes: Special Focus Facilities Are Often Improving, but CMS's Program Could Be Strengthened
GAO-10-197: Published: Mar 19, 2010. Publicly Released: Apr 19, 2010.
CMS established the Special Focus Facility (SFF) Program in 1998 to help address poor nursing home performance. States select a subset of homes as SFFs from a list of the 15 poorest performing homes in each state, but the program is limited to 136 homes nationwide because of resource constraints. CMS guidance directs states to survey SFFs twice as frequently as other homes and to propose more robu...
Loan Performance and Negative Home Equity in the Nonprime Mortgage Market
GAO-10-146R: Published: Dec 16, 2009. Publicly Released: Jan 13, 2010.
As GAO reported to Congress in July 2009, the number of nonprime mortgage originations (including subprime and Alt-A loans) grew rapidly from 2000 through 2006, a period during which average house prices appreciated dramatically. In dollar terms, the nonprime share of mortgage originations rose from about 12 percent ($125 billion) in 2000 to approximately 34 percent ($1 trillion) in 2006. These mo...
Social Security: Options to Protect Benefits for Vulnerable Groups When Addressing Program Solvency
GAO-10-101R: Published: Dec 7, 2009. Publicly Released: Dec 7, 2009.
For over 70 years, Social Security has been the foundation of retirement income for American workers and their families and has been instrumental in reducing poverty among the elderly. The Congressional Research Service estimates that if Social Security benefits did not exist, an estimated 44 percent of all elderly people would be poor today. Still, some people who receive Social Security retireme...
Elderly Voters: Information on Promising Practices Could Strengthen the Integrity of the Voting Process in Long-term Care Facilities
GAO-10-6: Published: Nov 30, 2009. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2009.
Voting is fundamental to the U.S. democratic system and federal law provides broad protections for people with disabilities, including older voters. Many long-term care facility residents, who often have physical or cognitive impairments, vote by absentee or early ballot. Concerns have been raised about the extent to which states and localities are helping the increasing number of facility residen...
Recovery Act: Recipient Reported Jobs Data Provide Some Insight into Use of Recovery Act Funding, but Data Quality and Reporting Issues Need Attention
GAO-10-223: Published: Nov 19, 2009. Publicly Released: Nov 19, 2009.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) requires recipients of funding from federal agencies to report quarterly on jobs created or retained with Recovery Act funding. The first recipient reports filed in October 2009 cover activity from February through September 30, 2009. GAO is required to comment on the jobs created or retained as reported by recipients. This report a...
401(k) Plans: Several Factors Can Diminish Retirement Savings, but Automatic Enrollment Shows Promise for Increasing Participation and Savings
GAO-10-153T: Published: Oct 28, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 28, 2009.
Over the past 25 years, the number of defined benefit (DB) plans has declined while the number of defined contribution (DC) plans has increased. Today, DC plans are the dominant type of employer-sponsored retirement plans, with more than 49 million U.S. workers participating in them. 401(k) plans currently cover over 85 percent of active DC plan participants and are the fastest growing type of emp...
Retirement Savings: Automatic Enrollment Shows Promise for Some Workers, but Proposals to Broaden Retirement Savings for Other Workers Could Face Challenges
GAO-10-31: Published: Oct 23, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 26, 2009.
Although employer-sponsored retirement plans can be an important component of income security after retirement, only about half of all workers participate in such plans. To foster greater participation among workers who have access to such plans, Congress included provisions that facilitate plan sponsors' adoption of automatic enrollment policies in the Pension Protection Act of 2006. To foster gr...
Nursing Homes: CMS's Special Focus Facility Methodology Should Better Target the Most Poorly Performing Homes, Which Tended to Be Chain Affiliated and For-Profit
GAO-09-689: Published: Aug 28, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 28, 2009.
In 1998, CMS established the Special Focus Facility (SFF) Program as one way to address poor performance by nursing homes. The SFF methodology assigns points to deficiencies cited on standard surveys and complaint investigations, and to revisits conducted to ensure that deficiencies have been corrected. CMS uses its methodology periodically to identify candidates for the program--nursing homes wit...