Major Management Challenges and Program Risks:

Federal Emergency Management Agency

GAO-03-113: Published: Jan 1, 2003. Publicly Released: Jan 1, 2003.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Jayetta Hecker
(202) 512-8984
contact@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

The 2003 performance and accountability series includes the first report on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) since the series started in 1999. GAO reported on management challenges facing FEMA this year because of the increased national significance of the agency's missions and the additional responsibilities placed on the agency. The information GAO presents in this report is intended to help sustain congressional and agency attention on continuing to make progress in addressing these challenges and ultimately overcoming them. This report is part of a special series of reports on governmentwide and agency-specific issues.

FEMA has made progress in recent years in achieving its mission of supplementing state and local governments' efforts to prepare and respond to major disasters. FEMA's mission will be absorbed into a new Department of Homeland Security. As FEMA moves to integrate its mission into this new department, FEMA faces several management challenges. Ensure effective coordination of preparedness and response efforts: FEMA and its missions will be transferred in their entirety into the new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) the largest reorganization of the federal government since 1947. However, FEMA's homeland security and nonhomeland security missions will be under separate DHS directorates. The separation of disaster and emergency preparedness responsibilities will present coordination challenges for the Undersecretaries within DHS. Enhance the provision and management of disaster assistance for efficient and effective response: FEMA has demonstrated its ability to quickly get resources to stricken communities in many disasters. However, FEMA needs to develop more objective and specific criteria to assess the capabilities of states and localities to respond to a disaster. FEMA needs to assess how the extent of its response and recovery assistance to future disasters may be affected by the magnitude and scope of recovery efforts undertaken in New York City. Information system problems and a shortfall of appropriately trained FEMA staff could compromise FEMA's ability to respond to a disaster. Reduce the impact of natural hazards by improving the efficiency of mitigation and flood programs: As the number of large, costly disasters has grown, FEMA has placed more emphasis on disaster mitigation efforts to reduce the effects of natural hazards. However, concerns about the cost effectiveness of some of the mitigation programs have been raised. The National Flood Insurance Program has not operated on a sound financial footing for several years. Resolve financial management weaknesses to ensure fiscal accountability: From 1998 to 2000, FEMA's Inspector General issued unqualified opinions on FEMA's consolidated financial statements. However, problems with some of FEMA's systems resulted in a qualified opinion on their 2001 financial statement, and FEMA plans to take corrective action. Until corrective actions are completed to address reliability of information and instances of noncompliance with requirements of certain laws and regulations, FEMA will not be able to achieve effective financial accountability.

Below are the reports in this series:

High-Risk Series: An Update GAO-03-119, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Strategic Human Capital Management GAO-03-120, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Protecting Information Systems Supporting the Federal Government and the Nation's Critical Infrastructures GAO-03-121, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Federal Real Property GAO-03-122, Jan 1, 2003

Added later:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Single-Employer Insurance Program: Long-Term Vulnerabilities Warrant 'High Risk' Designation GAO-03-1050SP, Jul 23, 2003

Performance and Accountability Series:

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: A Governmentwide Perspective GAO-03-95, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Agriculture GAO-03-96, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Commerce GAO-03-97, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Defense GAO-03-98, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Education GAO-03-99, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Energy GAO-03-100, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Health and Human Services GAO-03-101, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Homeland Security GAO-03-102, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Housing and Urban Development GAO-03-103, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of the Interior GAO-03-104, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Justice GAO-03-105, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Labor GAO-03-106, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of State GAO-03-107, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Transportation GAO-03-108, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of the Treasury GAO-03-109, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Veterans Affairs GAO-03-110, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: U.S. Agency for International Development GAO-03-111, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Environmental Protection Agency GAO-03-112, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Federal Emergency Management Agency GAO-03-113, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: National Aeronautics and Space Administration GAO-03-114, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Office of Personnel Management GAO-03-115, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Small Business Administration GAO-03-116, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Social Security Administration GAO-03-117, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: U.S. Postal Service GAO-03-118, Jan 1, 2003

Sep 30, 2014

Sep 26, 2014

Sep 25, 2014

Sep 19, 2014

Sep 18, 2014

Sep 12, 2014

Sep 10, 2014

Aug 25, 2014

Looking for more? Browse all our products here