IG: Pentagon’s stimulus reports riddled with 2,914 discrepancies

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The Pentagon’s $7.4 billion in stimulus funding was so poorly tracked that its inspector general said it was difficult to tell “how, when and where” it was spent.

A recent report identified significant errors and discrepancies, some in the millions, in the Recovery Act award reports. The IG audit found 1,943 reports for awards worth $1.7 billion contained 2,914 discrepancies on key information.

The discrepancies identified by the IG were significant. One recipient reported an award amount of $3.2 million to the federal reporting website, but the Pentagon recorded the amount as $474,000 in its system. Another recipient reported the award amount as $6.5 million, while the department recorded it as $12.1 million.

The $7.4 billion went to programs for energy conservation, homeowners assistance, military construction, and the modernization of DoD facilities.

The audit also revealed that the Pentagon did not establish a plan for data quality reviews that would identify omissions and errors, as required by the Office of Management and Budget for Recovery Act reports.

The department did not implement a structure of controls over Recovery Act recipient reports and lacked the ability to ensure that errors were corrected or that recipient data was accurate.

“The data did not provide transparency and accountability of expenditures so that the public will know how, when, and where DoD Recovery Act funds were spent,” the inspector general said.

In response to the inspector general report, the Pentagon said it will formulate an oversight plan with procedures for performing quality control reviews and monitoring data reporting.

FAST FACT: For 1,895 contract reports reviewed with discrepancies, 345 contained discrepancies regarding the amount of the award. Of these 345 discrepancies, 81 percent were greater than $1,000.

Following are other new watchdog reports released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), various federal Offices of Inspector General (OIG), and other government entities.

NATIONAL SECURITY

  • The Director of National Intelligence wants to increase the coordination of the intelligence communities’ information systems to better protect against unauthorized disclosures. While each intelligence agency has its own security procedures, the new directive issued by DNI would require more coordination between agencies. (DNI)

MISC.

  • Elder abuse prevention programs received $11.9 million last year, but little went directly to Adult Protective Services programs in the Department of Health and Human Services. State APS officials said it’s not enough funding given the growing demand for services and the increasing complexity of elder abuse cases. (GAO)

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