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The United States General Accounting Office
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Performance and Accountability Report 2000

GAO at Work

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Page last updated May 2, 2001

Achieving financial benefits:

Helping to Prevent Fraud and Abuse in Medicare:
GAO had long advocated increased funding specifically for activities to prevent fraud and abuse in the Medicare program. In 1996, the Congress passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which provided the additional funding. As a result of these activities, the Medicare program's net savings were about $3 billion in fiscal year 2000.

Cutting Costs of the F-22 Aircraft Program: In a series of reports beginning in the mid-1990s, GAO questioned various aspects of the Air Force's F-22 aircraft acquisition program. We reported that the acquisition strategy was risky and that the program was experiencing cost growth, manufacturing problems with test aircraft, and testing delays. Our analysis helped the Congress reduce the final fiscal year 2000 appropriation request for the F-22 by about $552 million and to identify conditions that should be met before the Department of Defense could begin full production.

Recapturing Excess HUD Funding: GAO identified funding from several sources in the Department of Housing and Urban Development's budget, including unexpended balances no longer needed, that could be recaptured in fiscal years 1998 and 1999. The Congress rescinded $1.65 billion from the Section 8 housing program's fiscal year 1998 budget authority and rejected $1.3 billion of HUD's fiscal year 1999 request for housing assistance for a total reduction of $2.95 billion. Subsequently, GAO and HUD worked together to revise HUD's analysis to show that, by using recaptured funds, HUD had sufficient funding to meet its needs.

Achieving other benefits:

Improving Nursing Home Quality of Care: The Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) and several states--including California, Maryland, and Michigan--improved their oversight and enforcement of nursing homes' quality of care standards in response to GAO's recommendations highlighting weaknesses in existing processes. Improvements included increased funding for nursing home surveyors, more prompt investigation of complaints alleging serious harm to residents, more immediate enforcement actions for homes with repeated serious problems, a reorganization of HCFA's regional staff to improve consistency in oversight, and increased funding for administrative law judges to reduce the backlog of appealed enforcement actions.

Improving Human Capital Practices: Our work on human capital issues helped focus the attention of the executive and legislative branches on the importance of these issues, particularly in managing for results. We helped spur the administration to make human capital a priority management objective in the fiscal year 2001 budget submission, and our framework for human capital self-assessment is being used at other agencies, including the Social Security Administration, the Small Business Administration, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the Environmental Protection Agency. The framework is also used throughout GAO to help guide our research and development work and our congressionally driven examinations of how well agencies are pursuing strategic human capital management.

Strengthening Information Security: GAO has evaluated the security of critical information systems at federal agencies and recommended numerous improvements, most recently at three Treasury agencies, the Department of Energy, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Environmental Protection Agency. In September 2000, GAO issued a governmentwide perspective on federal information security that covered Inspector General and GAO audit findings reported since July 1999. We concluded that weak security continues to be a widespread problem that places critical and sensitive federal operations at risk of tampering, disruption, and inappropriate disclosure.

[ Contents  |  Introduction  |  C.G.'s Letter  |  FY 2000 ]
FYs 2001 and 2002  |  Strategies and Challenges  |  Financial Information

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Accountability, Integrity, Reliability

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