December 10, 2018

Senators Warren and Young Bill to Increase Federal Transparency Passes the Senate

The Bipartisan Good Accounting Obligation in Government (GAO-IG) Act Would Increase Transparency into How Federal Agencies Spend Taxpayer Dollars

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Todd Young (R-Ind.) announced that their legislation, the Good Accounting Obligation in Government (GAO-IG) Act, passed the Senate last week by unanimous consent. The bipartisan bill would increase oversight of taxpayer dollars spent by federal agencies and would require federal agencies to provide annual reports to Congress on the status of implementing recommendations from the Office of Inspector General (IG) and the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

The GAO-IG Act would further require agencies to report on the status of recommendations as part of their annual budget justification. Currently GAO has over 8,000 open federal agency recommendations, and has neglected to act on these recommendations. To ensure that recommendations are implemented, GAO and IG would have to provide a timeline for implementation of outstanding recommendations or provide justification for not implementing the recommendations.

"I'm glad to see the GAO-IG Act pass the Senate, and I look forward to working with Senator Young to move this bill through the House," said Senator Warren. "This bill gives Congress and the American people new tools to hold the federal government accountable and ensure that it is fighting for American families."

"This bill keeps our government in check and protects Hoosier taxpayers. Increasing accountability in our federal agencies will better serve all Americans," said Senator Young. "I'm proud that this legislation has passed out of the Senate and I look forward to working with the House to get the GAO-IG Act to the President's desk and signed into law."

On June 13, 2018, the GAO-IG Act advanced out of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Expanding on legislation previously introduced by Senator Young, the GAO-IG Act prescribes the same accountability measures to the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. Department of Education.