Author Archives: WatchBlog

Improper Payments on the Rise

Increasingly, the federal government is making payments it shouldn’t. Improper payments are when the federal government overpays, underpays, or makes payments to ineligible recipients. In FY 2019, federal agencies reported about $175 billion in estimated improper payments—up from $151 billion … Continue reading

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Could AI Help Create New Medicines?

Developing and bringing a new drug to market is a lengthy and expensive process. Only about 1 in 10,000 chemical compounds that are tested makes it through the research and development pipeline and is approved by the FDA. This process … Continue reading

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Taxing Times: Turning to IRS for Help

It’s that time of year again—tax filing season. As you prepare to file your tax return, where do you turn for help? Millions of taxpayers visit irs.gov for information or contact IRS during the filing season either on the phone, … Continue reading

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The Rankings Are In—GAO Again Named Among Best Places to Work in the Federal Government

Continuing our streak, GAO has again been named one of the Best Places to Work in the Federal Government. This year, we rose to 3rd among mid-size agencies—up one place from last year.  We also once again ranked #1 in … Continue reading

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Home for the Holidays? Not So Fast…

Flights delayed or canceled, passengers bumped, family celebrations missed—we’ve all heard the air travel horror stories. What recourse do you have if it happens to you? Well, that can depend on what caused the problem. Today’s WatchBlog takes a closer … Continue reading

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Expanding GAO’s Science & Technology Expertise

We provide Congress with nonpartisan and fact-based analysis of technological and scientific developments that affect our society, environment, and economy. To enhance our ability to do this, we established the Science, Technology Assessment, and Analytics (STAA) team in January 2019. … Continue reading

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Federal Information Security: There’s Work to Do

Just about every federal government operation—from processing taxes and protecting national parks to coordinating military operations and delivering foreign aid—relies in some way on computers. Protecting government computer systems and the information stored in them is vital, and a 2014 … Continue reading

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Education for Students with Disabilities

In 1970, only 1 in 5 children with disabilities was educated in a public school, and many states had laws that excluded children with certain disabilities from school. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act sought to change that by requiring … Continue reading

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Climate Change and the Nation’s Most Contaminated Hazardous Waste Sites

Climate change may increase the frequency and intensity of certain natural disasters, which could damage Superfund site—among the nation’s most contaminated hazardous waste sites. For instance, flooding from Hurricane Harvey in 2017 damaged several Superfund sites in the greater Houston … Continue reading

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Can Irrigation Technology Address Water Scarcity? (Podcast and Infographic)

GAO keeps a close eye on the latest technologies, but today we’re looking at a truly ancient one: irrigated agriculture. Despite dating back at least 5,000 years, irrigation technology continues to improve. Micro irrigation, for example, applies water close to … Continue reading

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