GAO’s reports and testimonies give Congress, federal agencies, and the public timely, fact-based, non-partisan information that can improve government operations and save taxpayers billions of dollars.
In 2017, USDA announced a major initiative to provide better customer service to U.S. farmers, ranchers, and foresters by modernizing its IT operations. A key IT project was the 2018 launch of Farmers.gov to provide online self-service applications, like a farm loan eligibility tool.
In the early 2000s, the Forest Service, within the Department of Agriculture, centralized the operations of three major business services: (1) budget and finance, (2) human resources management, and (3) information technology.
Over the past decade, a series of devastating and deadly wildland fires has burned millions of acres of federal forests, grasslands, and deserts each year, requiring federal and management agencies to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to fight them.
Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Forest Service's trail maintenance backlog, focusing on: (1) the extent, cause, and effects of the backlog; (2) Forest Service efforts to deal with the backlog; and (3) new trail construction needs.
GAO provided information on the Forest Service's planned Geographic Information System (GIS), focusing on the: (1) Service's intended use of GIS; (2) estimated cost for GIS development and implementation; (3) Service's major actions to date; and (4) key steps toward acquiring GIS.
GAO reviewed the procurement of word processing equipment carried out during 1979 by the Forest Service's Pacific Southwest Region. At the time, the regional office and 10 of the region's national forest offices leased advanced word processing capability for 2 years.