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Highlights

The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) administers the federal crop insurance program in partnership with private insurers. In 2005, the program cost $2.7 billion, including an estimated $117 million in losses from fraud, waste, and abuse. The Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000 (ARPA) provided new tools to monitor and control abuses, such as providing RMA sanction authority to address program abuse and having USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) inspect farmers' fields. This testimony is based on GAO's September 30, 2005, report, Crop Insurance: Actions Needed to Reduce Program's Vulnerability to Fraud, Waste, and Abuse (GAO-05-528). GAO assessed (1) USDA's processes to address fraud, waste, and abuse, and (2) the extent to which the program's design makes it vulnerable to abuse.

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