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United States Information Agency (USIA)
An independent foreign affairs agency supporting U.S. foreign policy and national interests abroad, USIA conducts international educational and cultural exchanges, broadcasting, and information programs.
31st Annual Report
The ACIR Library is composed of publications that study the interactions between different levels of government. This document is an annual report.
United Nations: Status of U.S. Contributions and Arrears
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO updated its previous report on United Nations (U.N.) financial issues and U.S. arrears, focusing on: (1) the amount the United States will need to pay before the end of 1999 to avoid losing its right to vote in the U.N. General Assembly; (2) the trend in U.S. assessed contributions and arrears that has led to the current situation; (3) U.S. arrears and the amounts withheld for legislative and policy reasons; and (4) the status of member states that lost their right to vote in the General Assembly at the beginning of 1999."
Food Security: Factors That Could Affect Progress Toward Meeting World Food Summit Goals
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the outcome of the 1996 World Food Summit, focusing on factors that could affect progress toward meeting world food security goals."
Physician Performance: Report Cards Under Development but Challenges Remain
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed efforts to provide the public with information on physician performance, focusing on: (1) the issues involved in measuring and reporting on physician and physician group performance; (2) efforts to develop physician report cards; and (3) initiatives under way that may address impediments to measuring physician and physician group performance."
Federal Debt: Debt Management in a Period of Budget Surplus
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the actions taken by the Department of the Treasury to manage the marketable debt held by the public during the recent period of unified budget surpluses."
Information Systems: The Status of Computer Security at the Department of Veterans Affairs
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reported on the status of computer security throughout the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)."
Budget Issues: Treasury's Interest Rate Calculation Changes
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reported on the Department of the Treasury's decision to change the calculation of the interest rates used since 1980 to determine the investment returns for a number of government trust funds, including Social Security and Medicare, focusing on: (1) how and why Treasury changed its rules for calculating interest rates in 1980 and 1998; (2) the effects of these changes on the unified budget and on the financial status of Social Security and Medicare trust funds; and (3) what other trust funds were affected by Treasury's decision."
Federally Chartered Corporation: Review of the Financial Statement Audit Report for the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America for Fiscal Year 1997
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the audit report covering the financial statements of the National Academy of the Sciences of the United States of America for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1997, focusing on whether the audit report complied with the financial reporting requirements of the law."
Defense Acquisitions: Progress of the F/A-18E/F Engineering and Manufacturing Development Program
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed the Navy's F/A-18E/F developmental and operational test program, focusing on the: (1) extent to which the aircraft is meeting performance requirements; (2) risks associated with proceeding into operational test and evaluation (OPEVAL) with unresolved deficiencies; and (3) potential cost increases and risks associated with approving the Navy's request for multiyear funding for the program."
Management Letter: Suggested Improvements in IRS' Accounting Procedures and Internal Controls
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO provided information on additional matters it identified in its audit of the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) custodial financial statements for fiscal year (FY) 1998 regarding accounting procedures and internal controls that could be improved."
Results Act: Observations on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Fiscal Year 2000 Performance Plan
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Agriculture's (USDA) performance plan for fiscal year (FY) 2000, focusing on the extent to which the plan: (1) provides a clear picture of intended performance across the Department; (2) discusses the strategies and resources USDA will use to achieve its goals; and (3) provides confidence that the performance information will be credible."
Tax Administration: IRS' Return Selection Process
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed how effectively the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) selects individual income tax returns for audit, focusing on: (1) the extent to which IRS district offices have used various sources to select these individual returns for audit; and (2) comparing the results of audits selected using these sources in terms of the rate at which audits recommended no-change to the tax reported, amount of additional taxes recommended per return audited, and rates at which IRS assessed and collected such recommended taxes after the audit."
Prison Work Programs: Inmates' Access to Personal Information
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on: (1) the extent to which inmates in the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and state prison systems had access to personal information through correctional industry work programs; (2) prison safeguards and procedures, statutes and regulations, and proposed legislation that addressed correctional industry work programs involving personal information; (3) the extent to which contracts that provided inmates access to personal information contributed to BOP's and states' correctional industry income; (4) the extent to which BOP and state prison inmates had access to only names and addresses or telephone numbers through correctional industry work programs; and (5) incidents of inmates misusing information obtained through correctional industry work programs, including how safeguards failed and what, if any, changes were made as a result of the incidents."
Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of State
Other written product issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "As part of its Performance and Accountability Series, GAO provided information on the major management challenges and program risks facing the Department of State."
Managing for Results: Opportunities for Continued Improvements in Agencies' Performance Plans
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the fiscal year (FY) 2000 performance plans of the 24 agencies covered by the Chief Financial Officers Act, focusing on the: (1) extent to which the agencies' plans include the three key elements of informative performance plans: (a) clear pictures of intended performance; (b) specific discussions of strategies and resources; and (c) confidence that performance information will be credible; and (2) degree of improvement the FY 2000 performance plans represent over the FY 1999 plans."
Environmental Protection: Assessing Impacts of EPA's Regulations Through Retrospective Studies
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on efforts to assess the economic impact of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) regulations to enhance environmental quality, focusing on: (1) to what extent EPA's regulations have been the subject of retrospective studies; (2) whether retrospective studies are viewed as useful or difficult to do; and (3) ways to foster such studies in the future."
DOD Contract Management: Greater Attention Needed to Identify and Recover Overpayments
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO updated its previous report on the Department of Defense's (DOD) overpayments to contractors and subsequent refunds to the Defense Finance Accounting Service (DFAS), focusing on: (1) DOD's efforts to identify and recover overpayments made through fiscal year (FY) 1998; and (2) whether 13 contractors were retaining overpayments and how quickly overpayments were refunded."
Environmental Protection: Factors Contributing to Lengthy Award Times for EPA Grants
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the timeliness of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) grant award process, focusing on the: (1) the number and dollar value of the agency-requested and congressionally directed grants awarded for fiscal years (FY) 1995-1998; (2) median award time for both types of grants, as measured by the number of days between the date of the fiscal year appropriation and the date of the grant award; and (3) major reasons for lengthy awards."
Telecommunications: The Changing Status of Competition to Cable Television
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on: (1) the status of competition in the subscription television market; (2) the extent to which ownership ties between cable companies and program suppliers may be affecting the development of competition; and (3) key factors that may influence the development of competition in the future."
Superfund: Progress Made by EPA and Other Federal Agencies to Resolve Program Management Issues
A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on: (1) the efforts that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the other federal agencies with major cleanup responsibilities have made to set priorities for spending limited cleanup funds at the hazardous waste sites posing the highest risks to human health and the environment; (2) EPA's actions to recover its expenditures for cleanups from the parties that are legally liable for the contamination; and (3) EPA's efforts to better control contractors' cleanup costs."
Federally Chartered Corporation: Review of the Financial Statement Audit Report for the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War 1861-1865 for Fiscal Year 1997
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the audit report covering the financial statements of the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War 1861-1865 for the fiscal year ended August 31, 1997, focusing on whether the audit report complied with the financial reporting requirements of the law."
Agent Orange: Actions Needed to Improve Communications of Air Force Ranch Hand Study Data and Results
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined the conduct and findings of the Air Force's Ranch Hand study on the long-term health effects of exposure to herbicides, such as Agent Orange, in Vietnam, and assessed the study's impact on determinations of veterans' compensation, focusing on: (1) whether the study's findings and data have been properly and promptly reported and disseminated; (2) the statistical limitations of the study and whether they have been adequately reported and communicated; (3) the measures established to monitor the study's conduct and to prevent improper influence, particularly those involving the Ranch Hand Study's Advisory Committee; and (4) the impact of the study on determinations of diseases for which Vietnam veterans are eligible to receive compensation benefits."
Military Base Closures: Lack of Data Inhibits Cost-Effectiveness of Analyses of Privatization-in Place Initiatives
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request concerning the privatization in place of select Department of Defense industrial facilities, GAO focused on: (1) determining how contractors are responding to decreasing workloads at these privatized facilities; (2) comparing the cost-effectiveness of the privatization-in-place operations to the former government-run operations; and (3) identifying the impact of privatization on excess capacity in the Department's industrial infrastructure."
IRS Seizures: Limited Progress in Eliminating Asset Management Control Weaknesses
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) progress in eliminating asset management control weaknesses, focusing on: (1) the implementation of the IRS Restructuring and Reform Act's mandate to remove revenue officers from the asset sale function; and (2) other internal control weaknesses identified in GAO's 1992 testimony."
Financial Audit: American Battle Monuments Commission's Financial Statements for Fiscal Years 1998 and 1997
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO audited the financial statements of the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) for fiscal years (FY) ended September 30, 1998, and 1997. To help fulfill these responsibilities, GAO contracted with KPMG LLP, and independent certified public accounting firm."
Agricultural Trade: Changes Made to Market Access Program, but Questions Remain on Economic Impact
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Agriculture's implementation of legislative reforms to the Market Access Program (MAP) and their impact on program participation."
Internal Revenue Service: Serious Weaknesses Impact Ability to Report on and Manage Operations
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "GAO followed up on its report on the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) fiscal year (FY) 1998 financial statements."
Air Force Depot Maintenance: Management Changes Would Improve Implementation of Reform Initiatives
A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO assessed the progress of the Air Force's depot maintenance reform initiatives to improve the efficiency and responsiveness of its industrial operations."
Vaccine Injury Compensation: Program Challenged to Settle Claims Quickly and Easily
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed challenges facing the Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), focusing on: (1) how long it takes to process a claim through VICP; (2) the extent to which recent changes to the program's injury table have made it easier or more difficult for petitioners to obtain compensation for vaccine-related injuries; and (3) why the trust fund continues to grow, and what budgetary effect proposed options for addressing the growing trust fund balance would have."
Defense Health Program: Reporting of Funding Adjustments Would Assist Congressional Oversight
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the apparent discrepancies between the Department of Defense's (DOD) budget allocations and the actual obligations for direct and purchased care, focusing on: (1) the extent to which the Defense Health Program (DHP) obligations have differed from DOD's budget allocations; (2) the reasons for any such differences; and (3) whether congressional oversight of DHP funding changes could be enhanced if DOD provided notification or budget execution data."
Bankruptcy Reform: Use of the Homestead Exemption by Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Debtors in the Northern District of Texas and the Southern District of Florida in 1998
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the use of the homestead exemption by bankruptcy debtors in Texas and Florida, focusing on statistically valid probability samples of chapter 7 bankruptcy cases that were closed in 1998 in the Northern District of Texas and the Southern District of Florida. GAO used the data from these samples to estimate for each district the (1) the proportion of chapter 7 personal bankruptcy debtors who claimed a homestead exemption; (2) average and median amount of the homestead exemptions claimed; (3) average and median amount of total scheduled debts for those debtors who claimed a homestead exemption; and (4) estimated average and median amount of debts discharged by debtors who claimed a homestead exemption."
U.S. Export-Import Bank's Financing of Dual-Use Exports
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO provided information on the Export-Import Bank's (Eximbank) financing of dual-use exports, focusing on the extent of financing and end uses of dual-use exports approved during fiscal year (FY) 1997."
Rethinking the role of nuclear weapons.
Discusses the changing role of nuclear weapons in the post-Cold-War era in the United States.
National Airspace System: Review of FAA's Spending for Operations
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) spending from its operations account, focusing on: (1) the history of funding FAA's operations activities from the Airport and Airway Trust Fund; (2) whether FAA has data to allow a determination of whether its spending for operations is cost-efficient and cost-effective; and (3) changes that FAA could institute in its various programs, offices, and projects to reduce its spending for operations."
Managing for Results: Strengthening Regulatory Agencies' Performance Management Practices
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on performance management and measurement practices that could position regulatory agencies to more effectively implement the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993."
General Aviation Airports: Unauthorized Land Use Highlights Need for Improved Oversight and Enforcement
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO provided information on: (1) the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) monitoring of general aviation airports' compliance with federal land-use requirements; and (2) FAA's use of enforcement tools to resolve cases of noncompliance."
Federal Communications Commission: Direct Broadcast Satellite Public Interest Obligations
Other written product issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) new rule on direct broadcast satellite public interest obligations. GAO noted that: (1) the rule would impose requirements on direct broadcast satellite service (DBS) providers to comply with the political broadcast rules of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and mandates that the DBS providers reserve between 4 percent and 7 percent of their channel capacity exclusively for noncommercial programming of an educational or informational nature; and (2) FCC complied with applicable requirements in promulgating the rule."
Accounting Standards: Treatment of Asset-Backed Securities
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on whether the greater discretion allowed to banks as opposed to securities broker/dealers under accounting standards and practices may have resulted in less transparency in the value of asset-backed securities held by banks, focusing on: (1) mortgage-backed securities (MBS); (2) the accounting treatment applied to securities (including MBS) held by banks and broker/dealers; and (3) the accounting for securities holdings by the six largest bank holding companies and whether such holdings might have affected the transparency of financial statements."
Private Disability Insurance: Employer-Sponsored Plans
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reported on private sector employer-sponsored disability insurance plans, focusing on the: (1) number of people in the private sector covered by short-term or long-term employer-sponsored disability insurance; (2) number of short- and long-term disability claims filed each year and the number of initial awards; and (3) average processing time for initial short- and long-term disability claims."
Comments on the Government Waste Corrections Act of 1999
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the proposed legislation entitled the Government Waste Correction Act of 1999."
Rural Utilities Service: Status of Electric Loan Portfolio
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Rural Utilities Service's (RUS) generation and transmission (G&T) borrowers and assessed the likelihood of the federal government incurring losses in the future on loans to G&T borrowers."
Medicare: Identifying Third-Party Billing Companies Submitting Claims
Correspondence issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO described how the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) and its contractors monitor third-party billing companies' involvement in the submission of claims to Medicare."
United Nations: Progress of Procurement Reforms
A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the United Nations Secretariat's efforts to reform its procurement process, focusing on: (1) the types of procurement problems that the U.N. High Level Expert Group on Procurement and U.N. audit and inspection organizations found; (2) progress on the implementation of the Expert Group's recommendations and other reforms to correct procurement-related problems; and (3) whether these actions have succeeded in achieving the objectives of procurement reform."
Force Structure: A-76 Not Applicable to Air Force 38th Engineering Installation Wing Plan
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO provided information on whether the Air Force complied with relevant policy and congressional notification requirements in reaching a decision to deactivate the 38th Engineering Installation Wing (EIW) at Tinker Air Force Base (AFB), Oklahoma, focusing on: (1) the scope of the Air Force's planned action; (2) whether it is subject to the requirements of Office and Management Budget (OMB) Circular A-76 and 10 U.S.C. 2461; and (3) whether an analysis was completed to examine the cost-effectiveness of the planned action."
U.S. Department of Agriculture: Problems Continue to Hinder the Timely Processing of Discrimination Complaints
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Agriculture's (USDA) efforts to process discrimination complaints, focusing on: (1) the timeliness of USDA's Office of Civil Rights (OCR) processing and closing of program and employment discrimination complaints; and (2) the reasons for delays in the processes."
Confidentiality of Tax Data: IRS' Implementation of the Taxpayer Browsing Protection Act
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) implementation of the Taxpayer Browsing Protection Act, focusing on: (1) actions IRS has taken to implement the law; and (2) the number of potential and proven incidents of unauthorized access by IRS employees that IRS has identified since enactment of the law, as well as penalties imposed in cases where unauthorized access was proven."
Year 2000 Computing Challenge: Financial Management Service Has Established Effective Year 2000 Testing Controls
A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Financial Management Service's (FMS) Year 2000 program, focusing on whether FMS is: (1) effectively managing its year 2000 testing; and (2) taking adequate steps to mitigate the year 2000 risks associated with four mission-critical systems that were not implemented by the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) March 1999 deadline."
Community Development: Weak Management Controls Compromise Integrity of Four HUD Grant Programs
A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on whether controls are in place to ensure that block grant programs' objectives are being achieved and that funds are being managed appropriately, focusing on whether: (1) the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) on-site monitoring of grantees under the Grants Management System is adequate; and (2) the Integrated Disbursement and Information System provides the data HUD needs to accurately assess grantees' performance."
Month In Review: December 1999 Reports, Testimony, Correspondence, and Other Publications
Other written product issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "GAO provided a listing of its reports, testimonies, correspondence and other publications issued in October 1999."