International Food Assistance: USAID Has Controls for Implementation and Support Costs but Should Strengthen Financial Oversight, Report to the Chairman, Committee on Agriculture, United States House of Representatives   [open pdf - 6MB]

"In recent years, USAID has awarded about $1.4 billion annually for international food assistance projects under Title II of the Food for Peace Act (Title II). This funding has traditionally been used to provide U.S.-purchased commodities to food-insecure beneficiaries overseas. Section 202(e) of the Food for Peace Act authorizes USAID to also provide funding to cover project implementation costs, which have typically included administrative expenses such as implementing partner staff salaries. The Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill) increased the amount of 202(e) funding USAID can use for implementation costs from 13 to 20 percent of the annual Title II appropriation and also expanded the eligible uses of these funds. USAID's utilization of these new authorities presents potential oversight challenges. GAO was asked to review Title II implementation costs. This report examines (1) any changes in USAID's use of Title II funding to implement and support projects since the 2014 Farm Bill and (2) USAID's financial oversight of this funding for selected projects. GAO analyzed USAID funding data for fiscal years 2012 through 2015 (the most recent available), reviewed USAID and partner documents, and interviewed officials. GAO conducted financial reviews of a nongeneralizable sample of seven Title II projects, selected on the basis of project funding and implemented modalities. GAO is making five recommendations to USAID--for example, to conduct financial reviews, collect monitoring data, and assess risks. USAID concurred with the recommendations."

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Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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