Recommendations Database

GAO’s recommendations database contains report recommendations that still need to be addressed. GAO’s priority recommendations are those that we believe warrant priority attention. We sent letters to the heads of key departments and agencies, urging them to continue focusing on these issues. Below you can search only priority recommendations, or search all recommendations.

Our recommendations help congressional and agency leaders prepare for appropriations and oversight activities, as well as help improve government operations. Moreover, when implemented, some of our priority recommendations can save large amounts of money, help Congress make decisions on major issues, and substantially improve or transform major government programs or agencies, among other benefits.

As of November 30, 2021, there are 4659 open recommendations, of which 482 are priority recommendations. Recommendations remain open until they are designated as Closed-implemented or Closed-not implemented.

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Compacts of Free Association: Actions Needed to Prepare for the Transition of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands to Trust Fund Income

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6 Open Recommendations
6 Priority
Agency Recommendation Status
Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the FSM compact trust fund committee and of the FSM Joint Economic Management Committee, works with other members of the committees to develop the fiscal procedures required by the compact trust fund agreement. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and stated that discussions to address them are ongoing within the trust fund committees. In July 2018, Interior stated that discussions among the trust fund committees and others were ongoing and the fiscal procedures applicable to the trust fund disbursements will be determined prior to October 1, 2023. In February 2019, Interior stated that discussions about policies and controls were frequent and ongoing among Committee members and staffers along with the trust fund manager and investment advisers. GAO

Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the FSM compact trust fund committee, works with other members of the committee to address the timing of the calculation of compact trust fund disbursements. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and stated that discussions to address them are ongoing within the trust fund committees. In July 2018, Interior stated that the trust fund committees have been discussing options for ensuring that the timing of the calculation of compact trust fund disbursements align with the budget process of the FSM and that, of the options reviewed thus far, using a multi-year rolling average was the favored option. Interior added that the final determination on the timing of the calculation of the trust fund disbursements

Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the RMI compact trust fund committee, works with other members of the committee to develop a distribution policy for the RMI compact trust fund, as required by the compact trust fund agreement, that takes into account potential strategies that could address risks to the fund's ability to provide a source of income after fiscal year 2023. (Recommendation 4)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and set a target date for implementation of October 1, 2023. In July 2018, Interior stated that the trust fund committees were in discussions related to identifying the parameters and principles for a distribution policy and formula(s) to calculate the distribution prior to preparing the text of a distribution policy, and that representatives from Interior and the State Department would discuss our recommendations with the trust fund committees. According to the Trust Fund Administrator and Interior, the

Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the RMI compact trust fund committee and of the RMI Joint Economic Management and Financial Accountability Committee, works with other members of the committees to develop the fiscal procedures required by the compact trust fund agreement. (Recommendation 5)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and stated that discussions to address them are ongoing within the trust fund committees. In July 2018, Interior stated that discussions among the trust fund committees and others were ongoing and the fiscal procedures applicable to the trust fund disbursements will be determined prior to October 1, 2023. In February 2019, Interior stated that discussions about policies and controls were frequent and ongoing among Committee members and staffers along with the trust fund manager and investment advisers. GAO

Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the RMI compact trust fund committee, works with other members of the committee to address the timing of the calculation of compact trust fund disbursements. (Recommendation 6)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and stated that discussions to address them are ongoing within the trust fund committees. In July 2018, Interior stated that the trust fund committees have been discussing options for ensuring that the timing of the calculation of compact trust fund disbursements align with the budget process of the RMI and that, of the options reviewed thus far, using a multi-year rolling average was the favored option. Interior added that the final determination on the timing of the calculation of the trust fund disbursements

Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Secretary of the Interior should ensure that the Director of the Office of Insular Affairs, as Chairman of the FSM compact trust fund committee, works with other members of the committee to develop a distribution policy for the FSM compact trust fund, as required by the compact trust fund agreement, that takes into account potential strategies that could address risks to the fund's ability to provide a source of income after fiscal year 2023. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Upon the report's publication, Interior concurred with our report's recommendations and set a target date for implementation of October 1, 2023. In July 2018, Interior stated that the trust fund committees were in discussions related to identifying the parameters and principles for a distribution policy and formula(s) to calculate the distribution prior to preparing the text of a distribution policy, and that representatives from Interior and the State Department would discuss our recommendations with the trust fund committees. According to the Trust Fund Administrator and Interior, the

Indian Affairs: Key Actions Needed to Ensure Safety and Health at Indian School Facilities

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1 Open Recommendations
1 Priority
Agency Recommendation Status
Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
To ensure that all BIE schools are positioned to address safety and health problems with their facilities and provide student environments that are free from hazards, the Secretary of the Interior should direct the Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs to develop a plan to build schools' capacity to promptly address safety and health problems with facilities. Such a plan could prioritize assistance to schools to improve the expertise of facility staff to maintain and repair school buildings.
Open

Interior agreed with this recommendation. In June 2018, Indian Affairs provided us with documentation on its efforts to build schools' capacity to address safety and health problems with facilities. In particular, the agency updated its Service Level Agreement between BIA and BIE, which details their roles and responsibilities for inspecting and providing technical assistance to BIE schools, among other areas. However, Indian Affairs' documents provided little information on how it planned to support BIE school personnel in fixing safety hazards in their facilities. In our 2016 report, we

Indian Energy Development: Poor Management by BIA Has Hindered Energy Development on Indian Lands

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1 Open Recommendations
1 Priority
Agency Recommendation Status
Department of the Interior
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
To improve the efficiency and transparency of its review process, the Secretary of the Interior should direct the Director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs or the Director of the Office of the Indian Energy and Economic Development, as appropriate, to develop a documented process to track its review and response times.
Open

Interior agreed with this recommendation. The agency has taken initial steps by developing system enhancements to document the submittal date of energy-related documents. According to BIA officials, there is not yet a process for tracking and reporting on timeframes. To fully implement this recommendation, BIA needs to develop plans and procedures for management to gather information on agency response times for monitoring and assessment. In December 2020, BIA officials told us they were developing a report to share with the regional and agency offices which will provide information on the

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For questions about a specific recommendation, contact the person or office listed with the recommendation. For general information about recommendations, contact GAO's Audit Policy and Quality Assurance office at (202) 512-6100 or apqa@gao.gov.