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European Security: U.S. and European Contributions to Foster Stability and Security in Europe

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Since the end of the Cold War, the United States and its European allies are using smaller militaries, disbursing more development assistance, and increasing their reliance on multilateral organizations to provide for European security. Despite reductions in force levels and budgets, U.S. and European military forces have been actively engaged in peacekeeping and other security-enhancing activities in the region. The United States and its European allies have contributed to stability in the Balkans through various military and financial means. The Balkans operations have highlighted numerous shortfalls in the military capabilities of European allies, but competing budgetary priorities may limit their ability to remedy them before the end of the decade. Defense expenditures are expected to remain relatively flat in constant 2000 dollars over the next four to five years for most European allies, placing major defense initiatives sponsored by NATO and the European Union in jeopardy."
Date: November 28, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Foreign Assistance: U.S. Democracy Programs in Six Latin American Countries Have Yielded Modest Results

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Supporting democracy abroad is a major U.S. foreign policy objective. To better understand how this assistance has been implemented in Latin America, GAO was asked to review programs in six countries--Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Peru--that have been of particular importance to U.S. interests in Central and South America. Between fiscal years 1992 and 2002, U.S. agencies have funded more than $580 million in democracy-related programs in these countries. This report discusses the impact of and factors affecting this assistance and the overarching management issues that have affected program planning and implementation."
Date: March 18, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Rulemaking: OMB's Role in Reviews of Agencies' Draft Rules and the Transparency of Those Reviews

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Under Executive Order 12866, the Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) reviews hundreds of agency rules each year before they are published in the Federal Register. Those reviews can have a significant effect on a broad array of public policies. GAO was asked to (1) describe OIRA's review process and any changes in its policies or processes in recent years, (2) provide detailed information about rules submitted by nine health, safety, or environmental agencies that were returned, withdrawn, or changed at OIRA's suggestion, and (3) describe how OIRA decided that certain existing rules merited high priority review."
Date: September 22, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multifamily Housing: Impact of Loan Sales on Tenants and Properties Varies by Property

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the impact of loan sales on tenants and properties, focusing on: (1) the impact on tenants as project-based assistance contracts expire; and (2) the steps that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has taken to ensure that mortgage purchasers honor the tenant protections."
Date: January 20, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Accrual Budgeting: Experiences of Other Nations and Implications for the United States

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed other countries' experiences in accrual budgeting, focusing on: (1) countries' reasons for shifting to accrual budgeting; (2) the ways other countries are using accrual-based information in the budget; (3) the implications of accrual budgeting for decision-making; (4) the key implementation challenges (technical and political) associated with the use of accrual budgeting; and (5) issues raised by these countries' experiences that may be informative to the United States."
Date: February 18, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Combating Terrorism: Interagency Framework and Agency Programs to Address the Overseas Threat

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Coordination of federal programs to combat terrorism overseas became even more critical as a result of the terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001. In response to these attacks, the federal government has taken unprecedented political, diplomatic, legal, law enforcement, financial, military, and intelligence actions to combat terrorism abroad. Among these actions is the publication of a series of new national strategies to combat terrorism. Congress asked that we develop baseline information identifying and describing federal programs and activities to combat terrorism overseas. This report describes the interagency framework and policies for planning and coordinating federal efforts to counter international terrorism. It identifies the relationships between and among the new national strategies to combat terrorism. It also describes the federal programs and activities governmentwide to detect and prevent terrorism, disrupt and destroy terrorist organizations, and respond to terrorist incidents overseas. Finally, it provides detailed matrices of selected departments' programs and activities to combat terrorism overseas. We briefed Congress previously on the preliminary results of our work and issued an interim report on Combating Terrorism: Department of State Programs to Combat Terrorism Abroad. This report contains the final results of our review."
Date: May 23, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

HUD Rental Assistance: Progress and Challenges in Measuring and Reducing Improper Rent Subsidies

Description: A chapter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In fiscal year 2003, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) paid about $28 billion to help some 5 million low-income tenants afford decent rental housing. HUD has three major programs: the Housing Choice Voucher (voucher) and public housing programs, administered by public housing agencies; and project-based Section 8, administered by private property owners. As they are in every year, some payments were too high or too low, for several reasons. To assess the magnitude and reasons for these errors, HUD established the Rental Housing Integrity Improvement Project (RHIIP). In response to a congressional request, GAO examined the sources and magnitude of improper rent subsidy payments HUD has identified and the steps HUD is taking to address them, including efforts to simplify the process of determining rent subsidies."
Date: February 18, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Architect of the Capitol: Management and Accountability Framework Needed for Organizational Transformation

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The Office of the Architect of the Capitol (AOC) plays an important role in supporting the effective functioning of the Congress and its neighboring institutions. With a budget of $426 million, AOC is responsible for the maintenance, renovation, and new construction of all buildings and grounds within the Capitol Hill complex. GAO was mandated by the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2002, to conduct a comprehensive management review of AOC's operations to help identify improvements in strategic planning, organizational alignment, and strategic human capital management to help AOC better achieve its mission and to address long-standing program issues. To address these objectives, GAO reviewed AOC's legislative authority and internal documents, interviewed key AOC officials and senior managers, and conducted employee focus groups."
Date: January 17, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nuclear Safety: Concerns With the Continuing Operation of Soviet-Designed Nuclear Power Reactors

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on Soviet-designed nuclear power reactors, focusing on: (1) how much money has been spent by the United States and other countries for assistance to improve the safety of Soviet-designed nuclear power reactors--and the types of assistance being provided--as well as planned U.S. expenditures; (2) experts' views on the impact of the assistance; (3) the status of efforts to close high-risk Soviet-designed reactors; and (4) the management of the Department of Energy's (DOE) and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's (NRC) safety assistance activities."
Date: April 25, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Energy Markets: Effects of Mergers and Market Concentration in the U.S. Petroleum Industry

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Starting in the mid-1990s, the U.S. petroleum industry experienced a wave of mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures, several of them between large oil companies that had previously competed with each other. For example, Exxon, the largest U.S. oil company, acquired Mobil, the second largest, thus forming ExxonMobil. GAO was asked to examine the effects of the mergers on the U.S. petroleum industry since the 1990s. For this period, GAO examined (1) mergers in the U.S. petroleum industry and why they occurred, (2) the extent to which market concentration (the distribution of market shares among competing firms) and other aspects of market structure in the U.S. petroleum industry have changed as a result of mergers, (3) major changes that have occurred in U.S. gasoline marketing, and (4) how mergers and market concentration in the U.S. petroleum industry have affected U.S. gasoline prices at the wholesale level. Commenting on a draft of GAO's report, FTC asserted that the models were flawed and the analyses unreliable. GAO used state-of-the-art econometric models to examine the effects of mergers and market concentration on wholesale gasoline prices. The models used in GAO's analyses were peer reviewed by independent experts. Thus, GAO believes its analyses are sound."
Date: May 17, 2004
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

District of Columbia: Structural Imbalance and Management Issues

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "District officials have recently reported both a budget gap and a more permanent structural imbalance between costs and revenue raising capacity. They maintain that the structural imbalance largely stems from the federal government's presence and restrictions on the District's tax base. Accordingly, at various times District officials have asked the Congress for additional funds and other measures to enhance revenues. In a preliminary September 2002 report, GAO concluded that the District had not provided sufficient data and analysis to discern whether, or to what extent, it is facing a structural imbalance. At that time, GAO also agreed to perform a more comprehensive analysis and was asked to (1) determine whether, or to what extent, the District faces a structural imbalance between its revenue capacity and its public service responsibilities, (2) identify any significant constraints on the District's revenue capacity, (3) discuss factors beyond the control of District officials that influence the District's spending in key program areas as well as factors within its control, such as management problems, and (4) report on the District's deferred infrastructure projects and outstanding debt service and related expenses that might be affected by a structural imbalance. The District concurred with our key findings."
Date: May 22, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

NASA: Better Mechanisms Needed for Sharing Lessons Learned

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) uses several mechanisms to capture and disseminate lessons learned. NASA has established an agency-wide Lessons Learned Information System that managers are required to review on an ongoing basis. NASA uses training, program reviews, and periodic revisions to agency policies and guidelines to communicate lessons learned. Several NASA centers and key programs also maintain lessons learned systems that are geared toward their own staff. To improve the way it captures and shares information, NASA has developed a strategic plan, assembled a management team to coordinate knowledge management and activities at NASA's centers, and begun several information technology pilot projects. Despite the processes and procedures in place to capture and share lessons learned, there is no assurance that lessons are being applied toward future missions success. Although some lessons learning does take place, lessons are not routinely identified, collected, or shared by programs and project managers. Furthermore, there are challenges or cultural barriers to the sharing of lessons learned, such as the lack of time to capture or submit lessons and a perception of intolerance for mistakes. Although NASA's current efforts should lead to improved sharing of agency lessons and knowledge, they lack components critical to the success of knowledge management at leading organizations. Successful industry and government organizations overcome barriers by making a strong management commitment to knowledge sharing, developing a well-defined business plan for implementing knowledge management, providing incentives to encourage knowledge sharing, and building technology systems to facilitate information access. The application of these principles could help NASA to better carry out its mission."
Date: January 30, 2002
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Elections: Perspectives on Activities and Challenges Across the Nation

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Events surrounding the 2000 presidential election raised concerns about the reliability of various types of voting equipment, the role of election officials, the disqualification of absentee ballots, and the accuracy of vote counts and recounts. As a result, public officials and various interest groups have proposed reforms to address perceived shortcomings. This report discusses: (1) voter registration; (2) absentee and early voting; (3) election day administration; and (4) vote counts, certification, and recounts."
Date: October 15, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Budget Issues: Agency Implementation of Capital Planning Principles Is Mixed

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "In fiscal year 2002, the federal government spent nearly $100 billion on capital investments intended to yield long-term benefits for its own operations. Interested in ensuring that good investment decisions are made, the Chairman and Ranking Minority Member, Subcommittee on Government Efficiency and Financial Management, House Committee on Government Reform, asked GAO to evaluate agency experiences with the capital planning principles embodied in the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Capital Programming Guide and GAO's Executive Guide on leading state, local, and private sector capital investment practices. This report examines selected agencies' implementation of this guidance and OMB's use of long-term capital planning data."
Date: January 16, 2004
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Biofuels: Potential Effects and Challenges of Required Increases in Production and Use

Description: A chapter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In December 2007, the Congress expanded the renewable fuel standard (RFS), which requires rising use of ethanol and other biofuels, from 9 billion gallons in 2008 to 36 billion gallons in 2022. To meet the RFS, the Departments of Agriculture (USDA) and Energy (DOE) are developing advanced biofuels that use cellulosic feedstocks, such as corn stover and switchgrass. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administers the RFS. This report examines, among other things, (1) the effects of increased biofuels production on U.S. agriculture, environment, and greenhouse gas emissions; (2) federal support for domestic biofuels production; and (3) key challenges in meeting the RFS. GAO extensively reviewed scientific studies, interviewed experts and agency officials, and visited five DOE and USDA laboratories."
Date: August 25, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nuclear Regulation: NRC's Assurances of Decommissioning Funding During Utility Restructuring Could Be Improved

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "In most of the requests approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to transfer licenses to own or operate nuclear power plants, the financial arrangements have sought to ensure that adequate funds will be available to decommission those plants. However, when new owners proposed to continue relying on periodic deposits to external sinking funds, NRC's reviews were not always rigorous enough to ensure that decommissioning funds would be adequate. Varying cleanup standards and proposed new decommissioning methods introduce additional uncertainty about the future costs of decommissioning nuclear power plants. Changes to the Financial Accounting Standards Board's financial reporting standard will require, for the first time, owners of facilities that require significant end-of-life cleanup expenditures--such as nuclear power plants--to consistently report estimated decommissioning costs as liabilities in their financial statements. However, the new accounting standard is not intended to, and will not, establish a legal requirement that these licensees set aside adequate funding for decommissioning costs."
Date: December 3, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Aviation Safety: Safer Skies Initiative Has Taken Initial Steps to Reduce Accident Rates by 2007

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Safer Skies Initiative, focusing on: (1) to what extent addressing the safety problems to be addressed by the initiative will help reduce the fatal accident rate; (2) what progress the initiative has made in identifying and implementing interventions to address each of these safety problems; (3) what progress has been made in assessing the effectiveness of those interventions; and (4) how FAA is coordinating the Safer Skies initiative with other safety activities conducted throughout the agency, in partnership with the aviation industry, and by other federal agencies."
Date: June 30, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Acquisitions: DOD Efforts to Develop Laser Weapons for Theater Defense

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Defense's (DOD) programs to develop laser weapons for missile defense, focusing on: (1) what laser weapons are being considered for missile defense and the coordination among the program offices developing the systems; (2) the status and cost of each system; and (3) the technical challenges each system faces as determined by DOD program managers and analysts and other laser system experts."
Date: March 31, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

General Aviation: Status of the Industry, Related Infrastructure, and Safety Issues

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Over the past decade, the booming growth in scheduled commercial airline traffic has tended to obscure developments in another part of the aviation industry--general aviation. General aviation covers all civil aircraft not flown by commercial airlines or the military. In 1994, concerned that general aviation was in decline, Congress passed the General Aviation Revitalization Act (GARA), which sought to boost the industry by placing limitations on product liability lawsuits against aircraft manufacturers. Trends show that there was a decline in most general aviation indicators prior to the 1994 enactment of GARA and that this decline reversed in the years after GARA--sharply in manufacturing indicators and to a lesser extent in flying activity indicators. Trends in general aviation since GARA was enacted suggest that the law has reduced manufacturers' liability concerns, leading to a rebound in the manufacturing industry. The amount of federal funding available for capital development at general aviation airports has consistently been below what has been requested by the airport officials to fund their airports' planned projects. In 2000, for example, the amount of federal funding available was almost $900 million short of what was requested to fund airports' eligible planned projects. The safety of general aviation has been improving. The total number of accidents declined from 3,233 in 1982 to 1,989 in 1998--a decrease of 41 percent--while the accident rate fell from about 10 to about 7 accidents for every 100,000 flight hours. More than two-thirds of general aviation's accidents, both fatal and nonfatal, are caused by pilot error, including mistakes related to procedure, skill, and judgment. Besides determining the requirements for pilot certification, the Federal Aviation Administration oversees the safety of general aviation by working with federal agencies and industry groups to ...
Date: August 31, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Depot Maintenance: Key Financial Issues for Consolidations at Pearl Harbor and Elsewhere Are Still Unresolved

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "In 1998, the Navy consolidated the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and the Naval Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Hawaii. Because of concerns about some aspects of the consolidation, the Navy began a test project, commonly called the Pearl Harbor pilot, to determine if integrating the management, operations, and funding of the shipyard and the intermediate maintenance facility can result in greater efficiency and lower overall ship maintenance costs. In September 1999, GAO reported that the preliminary results of the ongoing Pearl Harbor pilot were mixed and recommended that the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Navy address unresolved issues related to the financial management of the consolidation as the Navy proceeds with similar consolidations in other locations. This report updates GAO's earlier report and discusses whether (1) the Navy has provided adequate cost visibility and accountability over the consolidation, (2) DOD and the Navy have resolved other issues related to the financial structure for consolidations at Pearl Harbor and elsewhere, and (3) the consolidation has generated greater efficiency and lower costs for ship maintenance at Pearl Harbor. GAO found that the Navy still has not provided adequate cost visibility and accountability over ship maintenance following the consolidation. DOD and the Navy have made little progress in resolving other issues related to the financial structure for the consolidation. GAO is unable to determine whether the consolidations have produced greater efficiency and lower costs for ship maintenance."
Date: January 22, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Regulatory Accounting: Analysis of OMB's Reports on the Costs and Benefits of Federal Regulation

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) 1997 and 1998 reports to Congress regarding the costs and benefits of federal regulations, focusing on, for each of four statutory requirements: (1) how OMB addressed the requirements in its reports; and (2) the views of noted economists in the field of cost-benefit analysis regarding OMB's responses in these reports."
Date: April 20, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Personnel: Actions Needed to Better Define Pilot Requirements and Promote Retention

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the reasons for the reported military pilot shortages, focusing on: (1) the services' reported and projected estimates of their pilot shortages; (2) the basis for the services' pilot requirements; (3) key factors that account for the reported pilot shortages; and (4) concerns that are causing pilots to consider leaving the military."
Date: August 20, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Developing Countries: Debt Relief Initiative for Poor Countries Faces Challenges

Description: A chapter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO: (1) assessed whether the enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC) is likely to free up resources for poverty reduction and achieve the goal of debt sustainability; (2) described the strategy to strengthen the link between debt relief and poverty reduction and how this strategy is to be implemented; and (3) described the challenges creditors face in fully funding the enhanced initiative."
Date: June 29, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Best Practices: Better Support of Weapon System Program Managers Needed to Improve Outcomes

Description: A chapter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Department of Defense (DOD) relies on a relatively small cadre of officials to develop and deliver weapon systems. In view of the importance of DOD's investment in weapon systems, we have undertaken an extensive body of work that examines DOD's acquisition issues from a perspective that draws lessons learned from the best commercial product development efforts to see if they apply to weapon system acquisitions. In response to a request from the Chairman and Ranking Minority Member of the Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support, Senate Committee on Armed Services, this report assesses (1) how successful commercial companies position their program managers, (2) how DOD positions its program managers, and (3) underlying reasons for the differences. In compiling this report, GAO conducted a survey of program managers. See GAO-06-112SP."
Date: November 30, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department