Anti-Drug Media Campaign:

Investigation of Actions Taken Concerning Alleged Excessive Contractor Cost

GAO-01-34T: Published: Oct 4, 2000. Publicly Released: Oct 4, 2000.

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This testimony discusses the Office of the National Drug Control Policy's (ONDCP) contract with Ogilvy & Mather, the lead media campaign contractor for the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. GAO reviewed ONDCP investigations into: (1) the facts and circumstances surrounding actions taken by ONDCP after receiving the allegations that Ogilvy may have over-billed the government, and (2) allegations that Ogilvy had provided services unrelated to the contract and had submitted invoices under the contract for those services. The Director of ONDCP, General Barry McCaffrey, knew about the fraud allegations concerning Ogilvy's billing practices. GAO found that Director McCaffrey had a private meeting with Ogilvy's project director after internal ONDCP discussions of the need for an external audit. However, GAO found no evidence that this meeting affected any decision with respect to an external audit of Ogilvy's contract. GAO also found that Ogilvy did not write congressional testimony for ONDCP employees, which would have gone beyond the scope of its contract with ONDCP. Ogilvy did provide ONDCP with figures, research, and documentation for use in responding to congressional inquiries and testimony. Ogilvy did not provide any services to Director McCaffrey involving his response to an article in the New Yorker magazine that was critical of Director McCaffrey's actions when he was in the military.

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