Wednesday, March 2, 2011

GAO Government Audit Highlights Widespread Government Waste

When the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released its independent performance audit of the federal government yesterday, jaws dropped nationwide.  For the first time in a long time if not our nation's history, government leaders and the public see now how poorly the federal government is managed.  Now, the real work can begin to reform the federal government and reduce overlapping costs.

On the surface, the report highlight numerous overlaps of multiple departments and agencies performing the same function.  Of course, this makes no financial sense, and this only adds to a bloated government and a tremendous waste of taxpayer money.

The major opportunities outlined in the report hinge on comprehensive reforms in the following areas:
  • Identifying and addressing government wide waste of duplication of enterprise architecture, inter-agency contracting, and tax expenditures across the entire federal government system.
  • Lowering drug costs (FDA) and eliminating duplicate contracting of drug procurement across multiple agencies (Defense; Veterans Affairs; and Health/Human Services).
  • Modernization of government electronic health records and integration of public health record systems nationwide.
  • Addressing inconsistent and wasteful duplication of multi-agency efforts for agriculture monitoring.
  • Modernization and consolidation of Defense business, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance systems.
  • Implementation of comprehensive department wide procurement program within the Defense department on defense programs to eliminate duplication and waste within the procurement process.
  • Consolidation of multi-agency efforts to repel biological or chemical weapon threats; securing nations' borders; and transportation threat monitoring.  Leverage consolidation to address inefficiencies and reduce wasteful spending.
  • Reduction of overlap of administration structures and costs of domestic food assistance; homelessness and transportation-disadvantages persons.
  • Consolidation of training and education programs within the federal government, that currently are spread out across multiple agencies, departments and programs.
  • Conduction and reduction of overlap of the teacher quality program, that currently is spread out by ten agencies and encompassed in 82 federal programs.
  • Addressing fragmentation of financial literacy efforts that currently requires twenty agencies to coordinate.
One major area of the report highlight's the government's inability to consolidate the health information networks and drug costs.  And yet the President and Democrats in Congress feel that Obamacare would help contain costs.  Really?
And yes, conservatives we need to address the inefficiencies within the Department of Defense. Thanks to the report, we can now address the redundant procurement and technology systems.   

Now is the time for the department heads (Secretary of Defense, HHS, etc.), and managers of the federal government to think like Corporate America to reduce wasteful spending within the federal government.  Start thinking that the funding for every department, agency and job within the federal government is your money.  Which it is.  And remember, it's a spending problem, not a revenue problem.

The GAO gave you the cheat sheet on what needs to get fixed, so get to work.  Prove to the American taxpayer that you really are frugal with our money.  The next election is in less than two years, and be reminded we are paying attention.  We are armed with information and will pull the lever to whomever will take a hatchet to the federal government to make it work, and cost-effective.

1 comment:

  1. I am afraid that so much energy will be expended in fighting the entrenched interests here that there will be little left over to have serious policy debates