IG uncovers ARRA reporting errors at DOD

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Recovery Act reporting at the Defense Department lacked data quality review, allowing military services to misreport $1.7 billion worth of inaccuracies, finds the Defense Department inspector general.

In a report dated March 23, the DoD IG reviews military American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 reporting done through Dec. 31, 2009. It finds that 1,943 reports on the recipients of stimulus money misreported key information such as the total amount of money received by a recipient or the number of jobs created or retained thanks to that money.

Congress appropriated $7.4 billion in Recovery Act funds to the DoD when President Obama signed into law on Feb. 17, 2009 the stimulus money bill.

Among the discrepancies uncovered by auditors was one recipient report stating it had received $3.2 million when the DoD had recorded awarding only $474,000 to that contractor in an internal system. Auditors also found errors in job reporting, with three recipient reports for contracts awarded after Dec. 31, 2009 stating that the money had retained or created jobs before then.

Although the DoD did assign responsibility for monitoring recipient reports for accuracy, the department never instituted procedures for monitoring the contracting officers' data review process, the report says.

"Because management did not have procedures established to monitor or to perform periodic assessments of the data review processes, DoD could not ensure that recipient reports were free of discrepancies in key data fields," the report states.

For more:
- download the report, D-2011-052 (.pdf)

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