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Obama Says Invest In Alternative Energy Programs As GAO Raises Concerns About His Energy Program

RNC Communications - March 12, 2012

Today, the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled, “DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications.” The review concluded that the President Obama’s Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program – which gave millions of dollars to green energy poster children like Solyndra – does not efficiently manage its loan guarantees or conduct proper oversight because it does not consolidate applicant data.

The GAO raised concerns that the inadequate (or lack of) documentation meant a lack of accountability when it came to reviewing how loans were granted to what companies and whether loan applicants were treated fairly and consistently. Furthermore, the GAO expressed concern that such poor documentation affected the Department of Energy’s ability to identify and reduce taxpayer exposure to risky companies.  

  • Non-Partisan GAO Found That The Department Of Energy’s Loan Guarantee Program “Does Not Have The Consolidated Data On Application Status Needed To Facilitate Efficient Management And Program Oversight.” “The Department of Energy (DOE) has made $15 billion in loan guarantees and conditionally committed to an additional $15 billion, but the program does not have the consolidated data on application status needed to facilitate efficient management and program oversight.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)
  • Department Of Energy’s Inability To Consolidate Data On Loan Applicants Meant It Was Unable To “Conduct Timely Oversight Of The Program.”  “Furthermore, because it took months to assemble the data required for GAO’s review, it is also clear that the data were not readily available to conduct timely oversight of the program.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)
  • GAO Found That The Department Of Energy In “Actual Reviews Skipped Applicable Review Steps.” “However, GAO found that the reviews that the LGP conducted sometimes differed from its established process in that, for example, actual reviews skipped applicable review steps.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)
  • In Some Cases, GAO Was Unable To Determine Whether The Department Of Energy’s Loan Guarantee Program Established Review Steps Due To “Poor Documentation.” “In other cases, GAO could not determine whether the LGP had performed some established review steps because of poor documentation.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)
  • Lack Of Or Poor Documentation Raises Concerns That Not All Loan Applicants Are Treated “Consistently And Equitably” And “In Some Cases, May Affect” The Program’s “Ability To Fully Assess And Mitigate Project Risks.” “Omitting or poorly documenting reviews reduces the LGP’s assurance that it has treated applicants consistently and equitably and, in some cases, may affect the LGP’s ability to fully assess and mitigate project risks.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)
  • Lack Of Documentation Makes It Difficult For Department Of Energy To Defend Its Decisions As “Sound And Fair If It is Questioned…” “Furthermore, the absence of adequate documentation may make it difficult for DOE to defend its decisions on loan guarantees as sound and fair if it is questioned about the justification for and equity of those decisions.” (“DOE Loan Guarantees – Further Actions Are Needed To Improve Tracking And Review Of Applications,” U.S. Government Accountability Office, March 2012)

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