Georgia – May 26, 2010

The content below was excerpted from the Georgia Appendix (PDF, 30 pages) of GAO's most recent bimonthly review of the Recovery Act.[1]

What We Did

We reviewed these programs funded under the Recovery Act-the Weatherization Assistance Program, the Clean and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds, the Public Housing Capital Fund, and the Tax Credit Assistance and Section 1602 Tax Credit Exchange Programs. We looked in more depth at the Weatherization Assistance Program because the Recovery Act funds were a large increase over Georgia's annual allocations and work had been under way for several months. We began work on the Clean and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds and continued work on the Public Housing Capital Fund because key Recovery Act deadlines passed during the review period. We began work on the Tax Credit Assistance and 1602 Tax Credit Exchange Programs-which provide capital investments in low-income housing tax credit projects-because significant Recovery Act funds had been obligated. For descriptions and requirements of the programs covered in our review, see appendix XVIII of GAO-10-605SP. Finally, we focused on the use of Recovery Act funds by selected localities and the state's efforts to ensure accountability over funds.

What We FoundBack to top

Weatherization Assistance Program

The U.S. Department of Energy (Energy) allocated about $125 million in Recovery Act weatherization funding to Georgia for a 3-year period. As of the end of March 2010, the 22 contracted service providers in the state had completed 1,538 (about 11 percent) of the 13,617 homes to be weatherized with these funds by March 2012. The state has taken a number of steps to increase production, including providing additional training for new weatherization workers. While monitoring has been slow to start, the state has taken measures to address deficiencies we identified in providers' procedures for determining client income eligibility and prioritizing work.

Clean and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) allocated about $122 million in Recovery Act funding to Georgia for the Clean and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds. The state used most of these funds to provide assistance to 59 projects. It reserved 21 percent of its Clean Water funds and 22 percent of its Drinking Water funds for green projects (such as those that increase energy or water efficiency) and ensured that subrecipients entered into construction contracts by February 17, 2010.

Public Housing Capital Fund

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) allocated about $113 million in Recovery Act funding to 184 public housing agencies in Georgia to improve the physical condition of their properties. As of May 1, 2010, these agencies had obligated all of their funds and drawn down about $35 million. All met the Recovery Act requirement to obligate their funds within 1 year of the date they were made available.

Tax Credit Assistance and Section 1602 Tax Credit Exchange Programs

Georgia received about $54.5 million in Tax Credit Assistance Program funds and approximately $195.6 million in Section 1602 Tax Credit Exchange Program funds. As of April 30, 2010, the state had committed $184.3 million (about 74 percent) under both programs for 31 projects, including the rehabilitation of 300 units for the elderly and persons with disabilities in Atlanta, Georgia, and the construction of 52 units for persons over age 55 in Sandersville, Georgia. The state expects to commit the remainder of its funds by June 2010.

Selected localities' use of Recovery Act funds

DeKalb County, the City of Savannah, and the City of Albany had been awarded $25.4 million, $9.6 million, and $5.9 million, respectively, as of May 4, 2010. These localities received funds for purposes ranging from improving energy efficiency to hiring police officers.

Accountability efforts

The State Auditor participated in the U.S. Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Single Audit Internal Control Project, which required earlier communication of significant deficiencies and material weaknesses in internal controls over Recovery Act funds. The resulting report identified several deficiencies at the Georgia Department of Transportation that the department has implemented changes to address. Further, the State Inspector General investigated two Recovery Act complaints, and several internal audit departments have plans to audit or are already auditing Recovery Act funds.

Full May ReportBack to top

Recovery Act: States' and Localities' Uses of Funds and Actions Needed to Address Implementation Challenges and Bolster Accountability
GAO-10-604
Recovery Act: States' and Localities' Uses of Funds and Actions Needed to Address Implementation Challenges and Bolster Accountability
(Appendixes)
GAO-10-605SP
  • [1] Pub. L. No. 111-5, 123 Stat. 115 (Feb. 17, 2009).
GAO Contact
portrait of of Alicia P. Cackley

Alicia P. Cackley

Director, Financial Markets and Community Investment

cackleya@gao.gov

(202) 512-7022

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John H. Pendleton

Director, Defense Capabilities and Management

pendletonj@gao.gov

(202) 512-3489