AGENCY GRADES

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FYI: The Government Accounting Office has once again found the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s rental assistance and single-family mortgage insurance programs to be at “high risk” for fraud and mismanagement. Every two years GAO audits each cabinet-level department and major federal agency to identify “management challenges,” as GAO puts it. Legislators have long complained about such challenges at HUD, and GAO’s audits have added fuel to the fire. GAO also added Medicaid to its list of high-risk programs for 2003, citing insufficient oversight of the programs’ breakneck growth. And it remained critical of the Department of Education’s student aid programs, again pointing to fraud as a major problem. Reports for each department and agency are available on GAO’s website. [1/31/03]