A Pandemic Response Accountability Committee report has identified the top challenges facing federal agencies in their COVID-19 pandemic response efforts and one of those is financial management.
“Key areas of concern include both the need for accurate information concerning pandemic-related spending and the significant amount of money federal agencies may lose as the result of improper payments,” the PRAC said in the report.
The three other areas of concern cited in the report are overseeing the use of grant funds and tracking grant performance; managing federal information technology systems and safeguarding such systems from cyber attacks; and protecting the health and safety of government employees, private sector workers, patients, inmates and detainees while maintaining effective operations.
The report was based on the committee’s review of submissions by 37 offices of inspector general overseeing agencies that are involved in pandemic response and emergency relief efforts.
OIGs also mentioned several factors impacting these challenges, including the large amount of appropriated funds and the need to maintain operations and disburse aid rapidly.
The PRAC within the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency was created to help oversee how agencies spend approximately $2.4T in funds on COVID-19 response efforts. The funds were appropriated through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act and three related funding measures that Congress passed between March and April.