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Building Partner Capacity: Inventory of Department of Defense Security Cooperation and Department of State Security Assistance Efforts
GAO-17-255R: Published: Mar 24, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 24, 2017.
Since 9/11, the Departments of Defense and State have worked to build the capacity of foreign partners to address security threats—for example, by training and equipping foreign security forces. However, the rapid increase in these efforts has led to questions about whether these agencies are adequately coordinating (and not duplicating) efforts. We conducted an inventory and found 194 DOD and...
KC-46 Tanker Modernization: Delivery of First Fully Capable Aircraft Has Been Delayed over One Year and Additional Delays Are Possible
GAO-17-370: Published: Mar 24, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 24, 2017.
The Air Force's KC-46 modernization program—initiated to replace a third of its aging aerial refueling fleet—is meeting its cost and performance targets. With fewer engineering changes than expected, the program's estimated total acquisition cost has decreased about $7.3 billion, or 14 percent, since its initial estimate. However, the project remains behind schedule. Boeing—the prime contr...
Airport Funding: FAA's and Industry's Cost Estimates for Airport Development
GAO-17-504T: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) estimate of the costs for planned capital development at airports over the next five years is about $32.5 billion, compared to the Airports Council International-North America's (ACI-NA) estimate of almost $100 billion, both for the period 2017-2021. The difference between these two estimates can be attributed to a number of factors, but most significant...
Aviation Certification: FAA Has Made Continued Progress in Improving Its Processes for U.S. Aviation Products
GAO-17-508T: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has made progress in addressing two rulemaking committees' recommendations regarding its certification process and the consistency of its regulatory interpretations.FAA has completed 13 of 14 initiatives for addressing the 6 certification process recommendations. For example, 5 of the 13 completed initiatives involved improving and expanding its program...
Commercial Space Launch Insurance: Weakness in FAA's Insurance Calculation May Expose the Federal Government to Excess Risk
GAO-17-366: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has revised its method for calculating insurance requirements to address some known weaknesses. FAA is the part of the Department of Transportation that determines the amount of insurance that commercial space launch companies must purchase to cover damages from accidents that harm third parties—that is, the uninvolved public—or federal property and pe...
Defense Commissaries: DOD Needs to Improve Business Processes to Ensure Patron Benefits and Achieve Operational Efficiencies
GAO-17-80: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Department of Defense (DOD) lacks reasonable assurance that it is maintaining its desired savings rate for commissary patrons. The Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA), which manages the commissaries, has a methodology for calculating the annual savings rate that patrons realize by shopping at commissaries rather than commercial grocery stores. In fiscal year 2015, the most recent data available a...
Immigration Status Verification for Benefits: Actions Needed to Improve Effectiveness and Oversight
GAO-17-204: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has taken steps to assess the accuracy of the information reported by its Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) system. For example, since 2014 USCIS has conducted monthly checks to ensure SAVE is accurately reporting information contained in its source systems. In addition, USCIS...
VA Disability Benefits: Additional Planning Would Enhance Efforts to Improve the Timeliness of Appeals Decisions
GAO-17-234: Published: Mar 23, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2017.
The Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) is taking steps to improve the timeliness of its benefit compensation appeals process, in which veterans who are dissatisfied with claims decisions by the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) can appeal first to VBA, and then to the Board of Veterans' Appeals (the Board). VA has taken actions related to increasing staff, reforming the process, and updatin...
Department of State: Foreign Language Proficiency Has Improved, but Efforts to Reduce Gaps Need Evaluation
GAO-17-318: Published: Mar 22, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 22, 2017.
Foreign language proficiency is a key skill for U.S. diplomats. For example, it helps the State Department effectively process visa applications and address security concerns. Yet, we've found that State has persistent shortfalls in this area—23% of its overseas positions that required foreign language proficiency were filled by staff that didn't meet the requirements (as of September 2016). St...
Face Recognition Technology: DOJ and FBI Need to Take Additional Actions to Ensure Privacy and Accuracy
GAO-17-489T: Published: Mar 22, 2017. Publicly Released: Mar 22, 2017.
In May 2016, GAO found that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had not fully adhered to privacy laws and policies and had not taken sufficient action to help ensure accuracy of its face recognition technology. GAO made six recommendations to address these issues. As of March 2017, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI disagreed with three recommendations and had taken some actions to...