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Released on September 18, 2018
Immigration: Progress and Challenges in the Management of Immigration Courts and Alternatives to Detention Program
GAO-18-701T: Published: Sep 18, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 18, 2018.
This testimony addresses our earlier work on 2 immigration topics: The U.S. immigration court system, which considers hundreds of thousands of removal cases a year. The case backlog doubled from 2006 through 2015, even as new cases declined. We recommended improving the system's management, including its hiring process. The Alternatives to Detention program, in which people with pending cases ar...
Low-Income Housing Tax Credit: Improved Data and Oversight Would Strengthen Cost Assessment and Fraud Risk Management
GAO-18-637: Published: Sep 18, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 18, 2018.
Developers can apply for federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to help them build affordable housing projects. The amount of credit depends largely on project costs. Project costs we looked at varied widely (shown below), and federal oversight of costs is limited. Federal and state agencies could use data on variables that affect cost—such as square footage and building type—to better monito...
Private School Choice: Requirements for Students and Donors Participating in State Tax Credit Scholarship Programs[back to top]
GAO-18-679: Published: Sep 18, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 18, 2018.
In 2018, there were 22 tax credit scholarship (TCS) programs authorized across 18 states, which provide state tax credits for individual and business donations that fund scholarships for students to attend elementary and secondary private schools (see figure).Tax Credit Scholarship Programs by State, Authorized as of January 2018Note: Each state has one program, except for Pennsylvania and Arizona...
Released on September 17, 2018
2020 Census: Census Bureau Improved the Quality of Its Cost Estimation but Additional Steps Are Needed to Ensure Reliability
GAO-18-635: Published: Aug 17, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2018.
In October 2017, the Census Bureau announced that the projected life-cycle cost of the 2020 Census had climbed to $15.6 billion, a 27-percent increase from its 2015 estimate. A reliable cost estimate is essential to budgeting, planning, and managing the Census. We found that, while the Census Bureau has improved its cost-estimation process, the 2017 cost estimation still doesn’t meet all the ne...
Cybersecurity: Office of Federal Student Aid Should Take Additional Steps to Oversee Non-School Partners' Protection of Borrower Information
GAO-18-518: Published: Sep 17, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2018.
The Department of Education's Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) partners with various entities (“non-school partners”) that are involved primarily in supporting the repayment and collection of student loans.Federal loan servicers are responsible for collecting payments on loans and providing customer service to borrowers on behalf of the Department of Education through its Direct Loan progr...
Defense Health Care: Expanded Use of Quality Measures Could Enhance Oversight of Provider Performance[back to top]
GAO-18-574: Published: Sep 17, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2018.
DOD’s Military Health System allows patients to use military or civilian health care providers. We examined the measures DOD's leadership reviews to assess providers' quality of care across its health system and found that DOD: is not using common measures across all providers; uses measures covering a limited range of medical conditions; and hasn’t created consistent standards and requirem...
Released on September 14, 2018
Federal Timber Sales: Forest Service and BLM Should Review Their Regulations and Policies Related to Timber Export and Substitution
GAO-18-593: Published: Aug 15, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 14, 2018.
The Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management sell millions of dollars of timber from federal forests each year. Federal law bans buyers from exporting unprocessed timber from western federal lands, along with related practices. Some agency policies to implement the ban are outdated or unclear. The agencies have also not issued required regulations. While the agencies found no violations of th...
Nuclear Nonproliferation: The Administration's 2018 Plan for Verification and Monitoring Met Most Reporting Requirements but Did Not Include Future Costs and Funding Needs[back to top]
GAO-18-617: Published: Sep 14, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 14, 2018.
In 2015 and 2017, federal law directed the President to submit a plan to Congress for monitoring the potential spread of nuclear weapons and materials. In earlier reports, we found those plans did not address required areas. A 2018 law again directed the President to produce a plan, which the National Nuclear Security Administration prepared. Most required subjects were included, such as plans fo...
Released on September 13, 2018
Electronic Health Records: Clear Definition of the Interagency Program Office's Role in VA's New Modernization Effort Would Strengthen Accountability
GAO-18-696T: Published: Sep 13, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 13, 2018.
Since its establishment in 2008, the Department of Defense (DOD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Interagency Program Office has been involved in various approaches to increase health information interoperability. However, the office has not been effectively positioned to function as the single point of accountability for the departments' electronic health record system interoperability eff...
Indian Health Service: Considerations Related to Providing Advance Appropriation Authority[back to top]
GAO-18-652: Published: Sep 13, 2018. Publicly Released: Sep 13, 2018.
The Indian Health Service (IHS) funds health care for over 2 million American Indians and Alaska Natives. Currently, IHS receives its funding as part of the annual fiscal year appropriations cycle. Delays in passing appropriations create uncertainty and disrupt operations. For example, tribal representatives told us that such delays have led them to pay invoices late—hurting their relationship...