Oregon's Financial Management of Funds Under the Older Americans Act

HRD-80-97: Published: Jul 17, 1980. Publicly Released: Jul 17, 1980.

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A review of the State of Oregon's financial management of funds under the Older Americans Act (OAA) was conducted. State and area agency planning, procurement, monitoring, and assessment practices and fiscal controls over the use of the funds were reviewed. The Office of Elderly Affairs, Department of Human Resources, is the designated State agency responsible for administering aging programs. The State agency divided the State into 17 planning and service areas and designated an area agency in 12 of the areas. The area agencies are responsible for developing and administering an area plan for a comprehensive and coordinated system of services. During fiscal years 1977-79, the 18 agencies received funds under OAA and State funds to provide social services to the elderly.

OAA requires both State and area agencies to assess the social service needs of the elderly and to evaluate the effectiveness of existing resources in meeting these needs. The State agency has not established guidelines to help area agencies conduct their needs assessments. Plan objectives, as developed by area agencies for fiscal year 1979-80, included measurable objectives for most service categories, but only about one-third of the service category objectives were stated in terms of the required service units. Regulations for administering the grants provide that all procurement transactions be advertised and that negotiated procurements be used only if formal advertising is not feasible. However, negotiated procurements were used in both area agencies visited. Many contracts were so general that it was not known what contractors were committed to deliver and whether they met their commitments. No provision was made in the State agency reporting system for reporting the amount of funds spent for area plan administration in its financial reports to the Administration on Aging (AOA). AOA regulations require State agencies to assess each area plan with respect to progress in achieving plan objectives, but the State agency does not do so. Ten area agencies were not in compliance with the AOA national priority service requirement for fiscal year 1979-80. Conflicting requirements exist as to the use of a person's income or resources to determine his eligibility for services.

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