Category Archives: Economic Development

How the Small Business Administration Partners with Historically Black Colleges and Universities

When Vice President Kamala Harris was sworn in January 20, she became the first candidate elected to President or Vice President to have attended a Historically Black College or University (HBCU). What are HBCUs, and what role have they played … Continue reading

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Foreign Investment and National Security

The U.S. economy has historically been the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in the world—it received $373 billion in such investment in 2016.  This investment can often be beneficial to the economy.  However, ensuring that these foreign investments do … Continue reading

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Residential Solar Electricity and Other Energy Saving Technologies (podcast)

Rooftop solar panels, smart thermostats, and other residential technologies increasingly allow customers to generate and store electricity, and better manage its use. While these technologies may allow people to more efficiently manage their power use—and lower their bills—too much customer-generated … Continue reading

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Mining for Gold and Other Minerals on Federal Lands

It’s Valentine’s Day and while some people may shop for flowers and chocolate, others may be seeking a longer-lasting gift like gold jewelry. But it’s not just Valentine’s Day that can lead to a gold rush. Mine operators can submit … Continue reading

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Rural Challenges, Federal Responses

Moving to a small quiet town surrounded by nature holds appeal for many Americans. However, there are a number of unique challenges to living and working in rural communities, including purchasing homes, building in high-risk areas, and accessing high-speed Internet … Continue reading

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Detecting Fraud in the Immigrant Investor Visa Program (podcast)

Foreign nationals who make substantial investments in projects that create or sustain U.S. jobs can get a conditional green card and a path to citizenship under the Immigrant Investor Program. Yet the program’s reliance on voluminous paper applications leaves it … Continue reading

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Helping Government Help Small Businesses

National Small Business Week recognizes the contributions of American small business owners and entrepreneurs. On the WatchBlog, it’s a time to look at the Small Business Administration—the federal agency that is charged with providing many small businesses with resources and … Continue reading

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Federal Grants and Other Assistance

Federal grants pay for all manner of things, including highways, health care, and education. Today’s WatchBlog follows the money trail of federal grants, discusses ways to improve grant management, and explores some ways the federal government can help states and … Continue reading

Posted in Auditing and Financial Management, Budget and Spending, Economic Development, Government Operations | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Getting Closure on Our Recommendations

Last year, we blogged about why agencies implement GAO’s recommendations. Looking at our annual Performance and Accountability Report, you can see that we’ve averaged 1,800 recommendations a year with an average 80% implementation rate between fiscal years 2010-2015. This adds … Continue reading

Posted in About GAO, Auditing and Financial Management, Budget and Spending, Business Regulation and Consumer Protection, Economic Development, Government Operations, Health Care, Information Security, Information Technology, National Defense, Tax Policy and Administration | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Buy Indian Act: A Work in Progress

American Indians and Alaska Natives have a unique legal and political relationship with the federal government that gives the government responsibility for protecting and improving tribal interests. For Native American Heritage Month, we’re taking a look at one law meant … Continue reading

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