Chickens coming home to roost - shovel-ready department

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A link to the following PDF document is here
Statement of Gregory H. Friedman, Inspector General, U.S. Department of Energy

Before the Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight, and Government Spending
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
U.S. House of Representatives
A few tidbits - opening statement:
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee:
I appreciate the opportunity to testify today at your request on the work of the Office of Inspector General (OIG) concerning the Department of Energy's (Department) implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act). The intent of the Recovery Act was to quickly stimulate the economy and create jobs while fostering an unprecedented level of accountability and transparency.
Department of understatement:
Based on our body of work, we found that the effort by the Department to use Recovery Act funds to stimulate the economy was more challenging than many had originally envisioned. The concept of "shovel ready" projects became a Recovery Act symbol of expeditiously stimulating the economy and creating jobs. In reality, few actual �shovel ready� projects existed. The Department programs which benefitted from the huge influx of Recovery Act funds, as it turned out, required extensive advance planning, organizational enhancements, and additional staffing and training. We found this to be true at the Federal, state, and local levels. As a result, despite a major effort in a high pressure environment, the Department struggled to obligate and expend Recovery Act funds on a timely basis. As noted, the expeditious creation of jobs was a prime goal of the program. The delay in expenditures was not helpful in this regard.
Not quite right:
Weatherization work was often of poor quality. In a recent audit performed at the state level, 9 of the 17 weatherized homes we visited failed inspections because of substandard workmanship;

Other program management issues adversely affected weatherization work. For example, one subrecipient gave preferential treatment to its employees and their relatives for weatherization services over other applicants, thus disadvantaging eligible elderly and handicapped residents;
The Office of Inspector General initiated over 100 investigations associated with the Recovery Act. These involve various schemes, including the submission of false information, claims for unallowable or unauthorized expenses, and other improper uses of Recovery Act funds.
And the new "jobs bill" is more of the same pork-ridden bloat. When has any large government program been effective...

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This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on November 2, 2011 4:41 PM.

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