The OPIA Blog

It is no easy task policing the federal stimulus package

The Inspector General in the Department of the Interior has a tough job ahead of him. Earl A. Devaney, Obama’s newly appointed IG for the Department of the Interior, is charged with catching any slip-ups, negligence and wrong-doing with the federal stimulus money. A particularly tough task given what has recently happened at AIG. The trickier part is that he has to try to do this before any of it happens.

Devaney chairs the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board–RAT–to prevent any federal waste. Because of the size of the stimulus bill and the required oversight to manage it, this project is unprecedented in American history.

The Washington Post article goes on to explain what the RAT Board is charged with and how much oversight relies upon the effectiveness of already existing agencies; perhaps being more effective than they have in years past. “The RAT Board is a grand experiment in government oversight. Made up of inspectors general from across the government, it is tasked with coordinating with overseers in federal, state and local governments to detect and prevent fraud, waste and abuse of stimulus money. But while most inspectors general are skilled at examining fraudulent activities through audits or criminal investigations, the RAT Board’s priority is to install preventive measures to ensure that no fraud occurs in the first place.”