GAO: COVID-19: Opportunities to Improve Federal Response and Recovery Efforts

Why GAO Did This Study

“… The CARES Act includes a provision for GAO to report regularly on its ongoing monitoring and oversight efforts related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Yesterday, GAO issued its first report (GAO-20-625).”

“Like the report, this testimony focuses on key actions the federal government has taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic, GAO recommendations for improvement, and evolving lessons learned relevant to the nation’s response to pandemics, among other things. GAO reviewed data and documents from federal agencies about their activities and interviewed federal and state officials as well as industry representatives. GAO also reviewed available economic, health, and budgetary data.”What GAO Found

“In response to the national public health and economic threats caused by COVID-19, four relief laws were enacted as of June 2020 that appropriated $2.6 trillion. This funding provided support to individuals, health care providers, businesses, and state and local government.”

“While complete government-wide data will not be available until July, GAO determined that as of May 31, 2020, a total of about $1.2 trillion of assistance has been provided—close to $700 billion in expenditures and over $500 billion in loan guarantees. Consistent with the urgency of responding to widespread health issues and economic disruptions, agencies have worked hard to give priority to moving swiftly. In moving quickly, however, agencies made trade-offs; thus, only limited progress has been made so far in achieving transparency and accountability goals.”

“GAO also identified challenges with the federal response to the crisis, including…”

What GAO Recommends

“In the report, GAO makes three new recommendations for agencies and three matters for consideration for Congress that address these issues.”

Access the full report here.

Source: COVID-19: Opportunities to Improve Federal Response and Recovery Efforts – June 26, 2020. GAO.

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