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Archive for the ‘Government Accountability Office’ Category

New From the GAO

July 28, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Railroad Retirement Board: Total and Permanent Disability Program at Risk of Improper Payments. GAO-14-418,June 26.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-418
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664467.pdf

2. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Opportunity Exists to Improve Transparency of Civil Penalty Fund Activities. GAO-14-551, June 26.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-551
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664452.pdf

3. Drinking Water: EPA Program to Protect Underground Sources from Injection of Fluids Associated With Oil and Gas Production Needs Improvement. GAO-14-555, June 27.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-555
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664500.pdf

4. Media Ownership: FCC Should Review the Effects of Broadcaster Agreements on Its Media Policy Goals. GAO-14-558, June 27.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-558
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664485.pdf

5. Security Clearances: Tax Debts Owed by DOD Employees and Contractors. GAO-14-686R, July 28.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-686R

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High Interest GAO Report — Information Management: The National Technical Information Service’s Dissemination of Technical Reports Needs Attention

July 23, 2014 Comments off

Information Management: The National Technical Information Service’s Dissemination of Technical Reports Needs Attention
Source: Government Accountability Office

The Department of Commerce’s National Technical Information Service (NTIS) offers a variety of products and information-related services. Its products include a repository of scientific, technical, engineering, and business research reports, which it makes available individually as well as through subscriptions to its reports library. However, from fiscal year 2001 through 2011, costs for NTIS’s products exceeded revenue for 10 of the 11 fiscal years, and the agency was financially sustained during this period by services it offered to other federal agencies, such as distribution and order fulfillment and various web-based services. (See figure.)

In addition, about 62 percent of the reports added to NTIS’s repository between 1990 and 2011 were older—with publications dates in the year 2000 or earlier, while about 38 percent were published from 2001 to 2011. However, demand was greater for more recent reports—those published in 2001 or later.

Further, GAO estimated that 74 percent of the reports added to NTIS’s collection from fiscal year 1990 through 2011 were available elsewhere, and 95 percent of these were available for free. This calls into question the viability and appropriateness of NTIS’s fee-based model for disseminating the reports it collects.

High Interest GAO Report — GAO-14-705T, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Preliminary Results of Undercover Testing of Enrollment Controls for Health Care Coverage and Consumer Subsidies Provided Under the Act, July 23, 2014

July 23, 2014 Comments off

GAO-14-705T, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Preliminary Results of Undercover Testing of Enrollment Controls for Health Care Coverage and Consumer Subsidies Provided Under the Act, July 23, 2014
Source: Government Accountability Office

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) officials told us they have internal controls for health care coverage eligibility determinations. GAO’s undercover testing addressed processes for identity- and income-verification, with preliminary results revealing questions as follows:

  • For 12 applicant scenarios, GAO tested “front-end” controls for verifying an applicant’s identity or citizenship/immigration status. Marketplace applications require attestations that information provided is neither false nor untrue. In its applications, GAO also stated income at a level to qualify for income-based subsidies to offset premium costs and reduce cost sharing. For 11 of these 12 applications, which were made by phone and online using fictitious identities, GAO obtained subsidized coverage. For one application, the marketplace denied coverage because GAO’s fictitious applicant did not provide a Social Security number as part of the test.
  • The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) requires the marketplace to provide eligibility while identified inconsistencies between information provided by the applicant and by government sources are being resolved through submission of supplementary documentation from the applicant. For its 11 approved applications, GAO was directed to submit supporting documents, such as proof of income or citizenship; but, GAO found the document submission and review process to be inconsistent among these applications. As of July 2014, GAO had received notification that portions of the fake documentation sent for two enrollees had been verified. According to CMS, its document processing contractor is not required to authenticate documentation; the contractor told us it does not seek to detect fraud and accepts documents as authentic unless there are obvious alterations. As of July 2014, GAO continues to receive subsidized coverage for the 11 applications, including 3 applications where GAO did not provide any requested supporting documents.
  • For 6 applicant scenarios, GAO sought to test the extent to which, if any, in-person assisters would encourage applicants to misstate income in order to qualify for income-based subsidies. However, GAO was unable to obtain in-person assistance in 5 of the 6 initial undercover attempts. For example, one in-person assister initially said that he provides assistance only after people already have an application in progress. The in-person assister was not able to assist us because HealthCare.gov website was down and did not respond to follow-up phone calls. One in-person assister correctly advised the GAO undercover investigator that the stated income would not qualify for subsidy.

A key factor in analyzing enrollment is to identify approved applicants who put their policies in force by paying premiums. However, CMS officials stated that they do not yet have the electronic capability to identify such enrollees. As a result, CMS must rely on health insurance issuers to self-report enrollment data used to determine how much CMS owes the issuers for the income-based subsidies. Work is underway to implement such a system, according to CMS, but the agency does not have a timeline for completing and deploying it. GAO is continuing to look at these issues and will consider recommendations to address them.

New From the GAO

July 22, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimony
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Small Business Administration: Office of Advocacy Needs to Improve Controls over Research, Regulatory, and Workforce Planning Activities. GAO-14-525, July 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-525
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664930.pdf

2. Managing for Results: Enhanced Goal Leader Accountability and Collaboration Could Further Improve Agency Performance. GAO-14-639, July 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-639
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664922.pdf

3. Telecommunications: FCC Should Improve the Accountability and Transparency of High-Cost Program Funding. GAO-14-587, July 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-587
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664940.pdf

Testimony

1. Large Partnerships: Growing Population and Complexity Hinder Effective IRS Audits, by James R. White, director, strategic issues, before the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. GAO-14-746T, July 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-746T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664918.pdf

New From the GAO

July 21, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Consumer Finance: Credit Cards Designed for Medical Services Not Covered by Insurance. GAO-14-570, June 19.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-570
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664256.pdf
Podcast – http://www.gao.gov/multimedia/podcasts/664738

2. State Department: Implementation of Grants Policies Needs Better Oversight. GAO-14-635, July 21.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-635
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664905.pdf

3. African Growth and Opportunity Act: Observations on Competitiveness and Diversification of U.S. Imports from Beneficiary Countries. GAO-14-722R, July 21.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-722R

New From the GAO

July 18, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Tax Policy: Differences in Definitions and Rules in the Tax Code. GAO-14-652R, July 18.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-652R

2. Management Report: Improvements Are Needed in the Bureau of the Fiscal Service’s Information Systems Controls. GAO-14-693R, July 18.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-693R

New From the GAO

July 17, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. National Nuclear Security Administration: Agency Expanded Use of Some Federal Oversight Reforms, but Is Still Determining Future Plans. GAO-14-588, July 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-588
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664836.pdf

2. Missile Defense: DOD’s Report Provides Limited Insight on Improvements to Homeland Missile Defense and Acquisition Plans. GAO-14-626R, July 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-626R

3. Information Security: FDIC Made Progress in Securing Key Financial Systems, but Weaknesses Remain. GAO-14-674, July 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-674
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664841.pdf

New From the GAO

July 16, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimonies
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Medicaid: Assessment of Variation among States in Per-Enrollee Spending. GAO-14-456, June 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-456
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664114.pdf

2. Special Education: Additional Federal Actions Could Help Address Unique Challenges of Educating Children in Nursing Homes. GAO-14-585, July 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-585
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664821.pdf

3. Coastal Zone Management: Opportunities Exist for NOAA to Enhance Its Use of Performance Information. GAO-14-592, July 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-592
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664805.pdf

4. Supplemental Security Income: Wages Reported for Recipients Show Indications of Possible SSN Misuse. GAO-14-597, July 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-597
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664795.pdf

Testimonies

1. U.S. Launch Enterprise: Acquisition Best Practices Can Benefit Future Efforts, by Cristina Chaplain, director, acquisition and sourcing management, before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, Senate Committee on Armed Services. GAO-14-776T, July 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-776T

2. High-Containment Laboratories: Recent Incidents of Biosafety Lapses, by Nancy Kingsbury, Ph.D., managing director, applied research and methods, before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, House Committee on Energy and Commerce. GAO-14-785T, July 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-785T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664800.pdf

New From the GAO

July 15, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Report and Testimonies
Source: Government Accountability Office

Report

1. Medicaid Payment: Comparisons of Selected Services under Fee-for-Service, Managed Care, and Private Insurance. GAO-14-533, July 15.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-533
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664783.pdf

Testimonies

1. VA Disability Claims Processing: Preliminary Observations on Accuracy Rates and Quality Assurance Activities, by Daniel Bertoni, director, education, workforce and income security issues, before the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. GAO-14-731T, July 14.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-731T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664762.pdf

2. Helium Program: BLM’s Implementation of the Helium Stewardship Act of 2013, by Anne-Marie Fennell, director, natural resources and environment, before the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources, House Committee on Natural Resources. GAO-14-751T, July 15.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-751T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664778.pdf

3. Federal Workforce: Human Capital Management Challenges and the Path to Reform, by Robert Goldenkoff, director, strategic issues, before the Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, U.S. Postal Service and the Census, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. GAO-14-723T, July 15.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-723T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664773.pdf

New From the GAO

July 14, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Report
Source: Government Accountability Office

Military Training: Observations on Efforts to Prepare Personnel to Survive Helicopter Crashes into Water. GAO-14-615R, July 14.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-615R

New From the GAO

July 11, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Report and Testimony
Source: Government Accountability Office

Report

1. Security Force Assistance: The Army and Marine Corps Have Ongoing Efforts to Identify and Track Advisors, but the Army Needs a Plan to Capture Advising Experience. GAO-14-482, July 11.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-482
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664733.pdf

Testimony

1. Fusion Energy: Observations on DOE’s Cost and Schedule Estimates for U.S. Contributions to an International Experimental Reactor, by Frank Rusco, director, natural resources and environment, before the Subcommittee on Energy, House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. GAO-14-750T, July 11.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-750T

New From the GAO

July 10, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Report
Source: Government Accountability Office

Private Health Insurance: Early Effects of Medical Loss Ratio Requirements and Rebates on Insurers and Enrollees. GAO-14-580, July 10.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-580
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664720.pdf

New From the GAO

July 9, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimony
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives: Enhancing Data Collection Could Improve Management of Investigations. GAO-14-553, June 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-553
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664515.pdf

2. Human Capital: DOD Should Fully Develop Its Civilian Strategic Workforce Plan to Aid Decision Makers. GAO-14-565, July 9.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-565
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664698.pdf

3. NOAA Aircraft: Aging Fleet and Future Challenges Underscore the Need for a Capital Asset Plan. GAO-14-566, July 9.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-566
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664708.pdf

4. Export-Import Bank: Information on Export Credit Agency Financing for Wide-Body Jets. GAO-14-642R, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-642R

Testimony

1. Improper Payments: Government-Wide Estimates and Reduction Strategies, by Beryl H. Davis, director, financial management and assurance, before the Subcommittee on Government Operations, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. GAO-14-737T, July 9.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-737T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664693.pdf

New From the GAO

July 8, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Littoral Combat Ship: Deployment of USS Freedom Revealed Risks in Implementing Operational Concepts and Uncertain Costs. GAO-14-447, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-447
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664669.pdf

2. Bulk Fuel Pricing: DOD Needs to Reevaluate Its Approach to Better Manage the Effect of Market Fluctuations. GAO-14-595, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-595
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664651.pdf

3. Electronic Health Records: Fiscal Year 2013 Expenditure Plan Lacks Key Information Needed to Inform Future Funding Decisions. GAO-14-609, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-609
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664646.pdf

4. Software Licenses: DOD’s Plan to Collect Inventory Data Meets Statutory Requirements. GAO-14-625, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-625
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664664.pdf

5. Afghanistan: Kabul Embassy Construction Costs Have Increased and Schedules Have Been Extended. GAO-14-661R, July 8.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-661R

New From the GAO

July 7, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Pension Advance Transactions: Questionable Business Practices Identified. GAO-14-420, June 4.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-420
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663799.pdf

2. Private Pensions: Targeted Revisions Could Improve Usefulness of Form 5500 Information. GAO-14-441, June 5.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-441
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663854.pdf

3. IRS Correspondence Audits: Better Management Could Improve Tax Compliance and Reduce Taxpayer Burden. GAO-14-479, June 5.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-479
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663839.pdf

New From the GAO

July 2, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

1. Climate Change Adaptation: DOD Can Improve Infrastructure Planning and Processes to Better Account for Potential Impacts. GAO-14-446, May 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-446
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663733.pdf

2. Prescription Drugs: Comparison of DOD, Medicaid, and Medicare Part D Retail Reimbursement Prices. GAO-14-578, June 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-578
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664522.pdf

3. Nuclear Security: NNSA Should Establish a Clear Vision and Path Forward for Its Security Program. GAO-14-208,May 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-208
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663746.pdf

New From the GAO

July 1, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Border Security: Opportunities Exist to Strengthen Collaborative Mechanisms along the Southwest Border. GAO-14-494, June 27.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-494
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664478.pdf

2. Virtual Currencies: Emerging Regulatory, Law Enforcement, and Consumer Protection Challenges. GAO-14-496, May 29.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-496
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663677.pdf
Podcast – http://www.gao.gov/multimedia/podcasts/664486

New From the GAO

June 25, 2014 Comments off

New From the GAO
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Information Security: Additional Oversight Needed to Improve Programs at Small Agencies. GAO-14-344, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-344
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664420.pdf

2. Aviation Safety: Additional Oversight Planning by FAA Could Enhance Safety Risk Management. GAO-14-516, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-516
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664401.pdf

3. Traffic Safety: Alcohol Ignition Interlocks Are Effective While Installed; Less Is Known about How to Increase Installation Rates. GAO-14-559, June 20.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-559
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664282.pdf

4. Diplomatic Security: Overseas Facilities May Face Greater Risks Due to Gaps in Security-Related Activities, Standards, and Policies. GAO-14-655, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-655
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664423.pdf
Podcast – http://www.gao.gov/multimedia/podcasts/664325

Testimonies

1. Export-Import Bank: Status of GAO Recommendations on Risk Management, Exposure Forecasting, and Workload Issues, by Mathew J. Scirè, director, financial markets and community investment, before the House Committee on Financial Services. GAO-14-708T, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-708T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664379.pdf

2. Medicare Fraud: Further Actions Needed to Address Fraud, Waste, and Abuse, by Kathleen M. King, director, health care, before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, House Committee on Energy and Commerce. GAO-14-712T, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-712T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664382.pdf

New From the GAO

June 24, 2014 Comments off

New From the GAO
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Maritime Security: Ongoing U.S. Counterpiracy Efforts Would Benefit From Agency Assessments. GAO-14-422, June 19.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-422
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664269.pdf

2. Combating Terrorism: U.S. Efforts in Northwest Africa Would Be Strengthened by Enhanced Program Management. GAO-14-518, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-518
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664335.pdf
Podcast – http://www.gao.gov/multimedia/podcasts/664322

3. Private Health Insurance: The Range of Average Annual Premiums in the Small Group Market by State in Early 2013. GAO-14-524R, May 28.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-524R

4. Public Transportation: Federal Role Key to Rural and Tribal Transit. GAO-14-589, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-589
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664339.pdf

5. Prepositioned Stocks: DOD’s Strategic Policy and Implementation Plan. GAO-14-659R, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-659R

6. Transportation Security Information Sharing: Stakeholder Satisfaction Varies; TSA Could Take Additional Actions to Strengthen Efforts. GAO-14-506, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-506
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664349.pdf

Related Product

Transportation Security Information Sharing: Results of GAO’s Survey of Stakeholder Satisfaction with TSA Products and Mechanisms (GAO-14-488SP, June 2014), an E-supplement to GAO-14-506. GAO-14-488SP, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-488SP

Testimony

1. Explosives Detection Canines: TSA Has Taken Steps to Analyze Canine Team Data and Assess the Effectiveness of Passenger Screening Canines, by Jennifer Grover, acting director, homeland security and justice, before the Subcommittee on Transportation Security, House Committee on Homeland Security. GAO-14-659T, June 24.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-695T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664330.pdf

New From the GAO

June 23, 2014 Comments off

New From the GAO
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. DOD Financial Management: The Defense Finance and Accounting Service Needs to Fully Implement Financial Improvements for Contract Pay. GAO-14-10, June 23.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-10
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664319.pdf

2. Telecommunications: USDA Should Evaluate the Performance of the Rural Broadband Loan Program. GAO-14-471,May 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-471
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663577.pdf

3. Medicaid: Financial Characteristics of Approved Applicants and Methods Used to Reduce Assets to Qualify for Nursing Home Coverage. GAO-14-473, May 22.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-473
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/663416.pdf

4. Advanced Reactor Research: DOE Supports Multiple Technologies, but Actions Needed to Ensure a Prototype Is Built. GAO-14-545, June 23.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-545
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664297.pdf

5. VA Spina Bifida Program: Outreach to Key Stakeholders and Written Guidance for Claims Audit Follow-up Activities Needed. GAO-14-564, June 23.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-564
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664304.pdf

6. Debt Management: Floating Rate Notes Can Help Treasury Meet Borrowing Goals, but Additional Actions Are Needed to Help Manage Risk. GAO-14-535, June 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-535
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664107.pdf

Related Product

Debt Management: Survey of Investors in Treasury Securities (GAO-14-562SP, June 16, 2014), an E-supplement to GAO-14-535. GAO-14-562SP, June 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-562SP

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