CV NEWS FEED // The Biden administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) underreported billions of dollars of spending according to its own Office of the Inspector General (OIG).
“The EPA’s initial reporting of its fiscal year 2022 spending in USAspending.gov was not
complete or accurate,” stated the EPA OIG in a January 9 report. “This occurred because the EPA’s Office of the Chief Financial Officer, or OCFO, did not follow its information technology configuration management procedures.”
The OIG report indicated that “the EPA’s fiscal year 2022 award-level obligations were underreported by $1.2 billion, and its fiscal year 2022 award-level outlays were underreported by $5.8 billion.”
“This means that 12.9 percent of the EPA’s total award-level obligations and 99.9 percent of the EPA’s total award-level outlays were not reported in fiscal year 2022,” continued the report:
The EPA also did not report any of its Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act outlays and underreported its coronavirus pandemic-related outlays.
The lack of complete and accurate reporting also led to taxpayers being initially misinformed about the EPA’s spending, and policy-makers who relied on the data may not have been able to effectively track federal spending.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-WA, called the report “eye-opening.”
“It’s outrageous and unacceptable that the EPA cannot keep track of its spending or inform Congress—and the American people—of how it is using taxpayer dollars,” the lawmaker indicated in a Thursday statement.
She added that the report demonstrates “another failure in leadership” for the agency, and “only further highlights the need for more transparency at the EPA.”
“It also raises questions about whether the agency is incapable of managing its record-high budget or if the agency is attempting to hide the amount of taxpayer dollars it is spending to advance the administration’s radical rush-to-green agenda,” McMorris Rodgers emphasized.
An EPA spokesperson claimed in a statement to The Washington Examiner that the agency’s fiscal year 2022 funding numbers were “properly accounted for.”
“This was an issue transmitting data to USASpending.gov,” the spokesperson continued.
Also according to the Examiner, EPA inspector general Sean O’Donnell “has previously raised concerns to Congress about the EPA’s ability to handle the flow of funds into the agency from President Joe Biden’s infrastructure and climate laws.”
Last March, he remarked: “The equation of an agency that is dispensing an unprecedented infusion of dollars, times the large number of recipient organizations struggling with capacity issues, equals an extraordinarily high risk for fraud, waste, and abuse.”
O’Donnell has held his position under both the Biden and the Trump administrations. He previously served concurrently as the acting Inspector General of the Department of Defense.
His office’s report comes in the midst of the Biden administration’s attempt to implement various controversial “green” policies with the stated intention of combating climate change.
Last week, a federal appeals court ruled against regulations by the administration’s Department of Energy (DOE) aimed at controlling the types of dishwashers and washing machines American households may use.