Blog Archives

Tackling the Tax Code – How the IRS Communicates with Taxpayers

The tax code is complex, so taxpayers rely on the IRS to help them understand and follow the law. But the IRS publishes thousands of guidance documents a year, so where should taxpayers start? As we near the end of … Continue reading

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401(k) Eligibility and Vesting Policies (podcast)

Millions of Americans depend on their 401(k) retirement plans to sustain them through their later years. It’s money they’ve been setting aside from their paychecks, and in some cases their employers have kicked in funds as well. But not all … Continue reading

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Achieving Financial Benefits—One Action at a Time

Since 2011, we’ve outlined actions federal agencies and Congress can take to reduce fragmentation, overlap, and duplication in federal programs and activities—work that resulted in $56 billion in financial benefits to the federal government between fiscal years 2010 and 2015 … Continue reading

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Vehicle Safety – A Closer Look

Driving is one of the riskiest things most Americans do. There were more than 5.5 million vehicle crashes in the U.S. in 2013—killing more than 32,000 people and injuring another 2.3 million. You may remember getting your car inspected for … Continue reading

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The Insights and Analyses from Mapping Data

Geographic information systems (GIS) are powerful tools that display spatial information (such as locations on a map) in order to help us understand patterns and relationships about our world. So, with National GIS Day on November 16th, the WatchBlog is … Continue reading

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GAO’s 2016 Performance and Accountability Report—Over $63 Billion in Financial Benefits

Once a year we like to share the results of our work with you, the taxpayer. This year our audit work produced over $63 billion in financial benefits. In other words, for every $1 Congress invested in us, we returned … Continue reading

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Preparing the Next Leaders

The elections are over and new leaders are assembling staff, setting priorities, and preparing to tackle major issues facing the nation. What do these leaders and their staff need to know to hit the ground running in January? Our Management … Continue reading

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Priority Recommendations

Every year we make hundreds of recommendations to federal agencies on ways to improve government operations and reduce costs. With so many opportunities for improvement, agency heads and other policymakers may have trouble deciding where to start. We’ve got plenty … Continue reading

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Priorities for Policy Makers – Our App for Government on the Go

The election is over. The transition is here. But how will new executive branch leaders and new congressional staff decide where to start? As policymakers shift gears from campaigning to governing, they need to quickly learn about their new positions … Continue reading

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Federal Smarter Buying Initiatives (podcast)

The federal government saved nearly $500 million over the past 5 years through “smarter buying”—such as by leveraging the government’s collective buying power for discounts on things like office supplies. But that’s small change compared to the billions of dollars … Continue reading

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