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Economic Development (31 - 40 of 3,037 items)
Flood Insurance: Status of FEMA's Implementation of the Biggert-Waters Act, as Amended
GAO-15-178: Published: Feb 19, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 19, 2015.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has established some practices for managing its implementation of required changes under the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act (Biggert-Waters Act), as amended by the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (HFIAA). Consistent with related federal internal control standards, FEMA has collaborated with stakeholders on prioritizing legislati...
African Growth and Opportunity Act: Eligibility Process and Economic Development in Sub-Saharan Africa
GAO-15-300: Published: Feb 12, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 12, 2015.
The U.S. government uses the annual eligibility review process required by the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) to engage with sub-Saharan African countries on their progress toward economic, political, and development reform objectives reflected in AGOA's eligibility criteria. Managed by the Office of the United States Trade Representative, the review process brings together officials fr...
Federal Emergency Management Agency: Opportunities Exist to Strengthen Oversight of Administrative Costs for Major Disasters
GAO-15-65: Published: Dec 17, 2014. Publicly Released: Dec 17, 2014.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) obligated $12.7 billion from the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) for its administrative costs from fiscal years 2004 through 2013 and has taken some steps to reduce and better control these costs. This $12.7 billion represents 13 percent of the $95.2 billion obligated from the DRF for the 650 major disasters declared during this time frame. FEMA's average...
Hurricane Sandy: FEMA Has Improved Disaster Aid Verification but Could Act to Further Limit Improper Assistance
GAO-15-15: Published: Dec 12, 2014. Publicly Released: Dec 12, 2014.
By implementing new controls since the mid-2000s, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) improved its ability to detect improper and potentially fraudulent payments, but GAO identified continued weaknesses in the agency's validation of Social Security numbers, among other things. As of August 2014, FEMA stated that it had provided over $1.4 billion in Hurricane Sandy assistance through its...
Flood Insurance: Forgone Premiums Cannot Be Measured and FEMA Should Validate and Monitor Data System Changes
GAO-15-111: Published: Dec 11, 2014. Publicly Released: Dec 11, 2014.
The actual forgone premiums—the difference between subsidized and full-risk premiums—to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) due to subsidies cannot be measured. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) does not collect flood risk information for all subsidized policies, which is needed to calculate their full-risk premium rates. GAO recommended in July 2013 that FEMA develop and...
Small Business Administration: Additional Steps Needed to Help Ensure More Timely Disaster Assistance
GAO-14-760: Published: Sep 29, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 23, 2014.
Following Hurricane Sandy, the Small Business Administration (SBA) did not meet its timeliness goal for processing business loan applications. From application receipt to loan decision, SBA took an average of 45 days to process physical business disaster loans and 38 days for economic injury loans, both of which exceed SBA's 21-day application processing goal. SBA said it was challenged by an unex...
Army Corps of Engineers: The Corps Needs to Take Steps to Identify All Projects and Studies Eligible for Deauthorization
GAO-14-699: Published: Aug 21, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 22, 2014.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' (Corps) backlog list of authorized water resources construction projects is incomplete because the agency does not track all authorized projects and the list does not include studies. Specifically, GAO found that the backlog does not include some projects that were authorized but were not appropriated funds. Corps headquarters officials said that the agency does n...
Bureau of Reclamation: Availability of Information on Repayment of Water Project Construction Costs Could Be Better Promoted
GAO-14-764: Published: Sep 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 9, 2014.
The Department of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation collects information on water project construction costs and the status of repayment by irrigation districts—entities that have entered into contracts with the agency to receive project water for irrigation purposes—but has not publicly reported repayment information since the 1980s. Reclamation's data on water project construction cost re...
New Markets Tax Credit: Better Controls and Data Are Needed to Ensure Effectiveness
GAO-14-500: Published: Jul 10, 2014. Publicly Released: Aug 11, 2014.
The financial structures of New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) investments have become more complex and less transparent over time. The increased complexity is due, in part, to combining the NMTC with other federal, state, and local government funds. Based on GAO's survey of Community Development Entities (CDEs) an estimated 62 percent of NMTC projects received other federal, state, or local government...
National Flood Insurance Program: Additional Guidance on Building Requirements to Mitigate Agricultural Structures' Damage in High-Risk Areas Is Needed
GAO-14-583: Published: Jun 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2014.
The effects of the National Flood Insurance Program's (NFIP) building requirements for elevating or flood-proofing agricultural structures in high-risk areas varied across selected communities, according to interviews GAO conducted with floodplain managers and farmers. Specifically:Floodplain managers and 12 farmers in selected rural communities with whom GAO spoke in Louisiana, North Carolina, an...