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New ARRA Info Resources

New Recovery Act information resources continue to appear on the scene. Here is a roundup of new items from the past few weeks:

FedSpending Reconfiguration of ARRA Recipient Data

FedSpending.org, a project of OMB Watch, was the first website to provide convenient access to data on federal contracts and grants. Now the site has added a new section with ARRA recipient data, beginning with the first round of numbers that were issued on October 30 via the federal government's Recovery.gov site. FedSpending makes it easier to search the data in a variety of ways and to display and download results.

CBO on ARRA Impacts

The Congressional Budget Office released a new set of estimates on the economic impacts of ARRA. It finds that in the third quarter of 2009 the stimulus was responsible for increasing employment by 600,000 to 1.6 million nationwide and for raising real gross domestic product by 1.2 to 3.2 percent.

GAO on Recipient Data

A Government Accountability Office report confirmed widely reported problems in the first round of ARRA recipient reporting. The GAO paid special attention to the nearly 4,000 cases in which a recipient received or expended funds but claimed that no jobs were created or retained.

OMB on Recipient Non-Reporting

The Office of Management and Budget issued a memo directing executive departments and agencies to identify ARRA recipients that have not submitted reports and to inform them of the potential consequences of continued non-compliance.

House Oversight Committee Hearing

The GAO report on recipient data formed the basis of testimony that Acting Comptroller General Gene Dodaro gave before a hearing of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Also appearing were Recovery Board chair Earl Devaney, the deputy secretaries of Transportation and Education, and others. Links to their testimony and a webcast of the hearing can be found on the committee's website.

Latest GAO Bimonthly Report on States and Localities

Earlier this month the GAO came out with its fourth bimonthly report on ARRA spending by states and localities. It found that about $69 billion of ARRA funds for programs administered by state and localities had been paid out. Not surprisingly, it found that the largest amounts were in increased Medicaid and education funding.

GAO on Transportation Spending

In recent testimony before a hearing of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, GAO reported that three-quarters of ARRA highway funds, or $20.4 billion, have been obligated for about 8,800 projects nationwide, and almost $6 billion in ARRA transit funds have been obligated.

These resources and many others can be found in the STAR Coalition website's Recovery Act Info Center, especially the Weblinks/Bibliography page and the Accountability & Transparency page.

 

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