oversight

FEMA Cerro Grande Claims: Payments Properly Processed, but Reporting Could Be Improved

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 2003-12-24.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                United States General Accounting Office

GAO             Report to the Committee on
                Appropriations, U.S. Senate, and the
                Committee on Appropriations, House of
                Representatives

December 2003
                FEMA CERRO
                GRANDE CLAIMS
                Payments Properly
                Processed, but
                Reporting Could Be
                Improved




GAO-04-129
                a
                                                December 2003


                                                FEMA CERRO GRANDE CLAIMS

                                                Payments Properly Processed, but
Highlights of GAO-04-129, a report to the       Reporting Could Be Improved
Committee on Appropriations, U.S.
Senate, and the Committee on
Appropriations, House of Representatives




The Cerro Grande Fire Assistance                FEMA processed and paid its claims in accordance with its policies and
Act (CGFAA) mandated that GAO                   procedures that were established and in place at the time the claims were
annually audit all claim payments               reviewed and processed. For the period from August 29, 2002, to
made to compensate the victims of               June 30, 2003, FEMA approved $40 million in claims for payment, including
the Cerro Grande Fire in northern               the initial payment of most of the subrogation claims made by insurance
New Mexico. For this third report
on this topic, GAO determined
                                                companies.
whether the Federal Emergency
Management Agency (FEMA),                       In response to GAO’s May 2003 report, FEMA established processes to
which is now a part of the                      address GAO’s recommendations related to reconciling claimed amounts
Emergency Preparedness and                      approved with actual amounts paid. These processes included comparing
Response Directorate of the                     the individual amounts approved for payment to the amounts actually paid
Department of Homeland Security,                from inception through June 30, 2003, by claim, as well as performing
(1) paid fire claims in accordance              complete reconciliations of total amounts that were approved and paid for
with applicable guidance and                    the same period and as of August 31, 2003. In addition, in our prior report,
(2) implemented corrective actions              we noted that FEMA improperly reported unreconciled claim amounts
to address prior GAO                            approved for payment as amounts actually paid. In its 2003 annual report,
recommendations, including
                                                FEMA properly identified claimed amounts as approved amounts for
determining if FEMA properly
reported claim payments to the                  payment rather than actual amounts paid in a schedule that was included in
Congress.                                       its annual report to the Congress. However, FEMA no longer provided
                                                summary information on amounts claimed, amounts approved, and its
                                                remaining estimated liabilities in its report to the Congress and did not
                                                include any information on claims paid as is required by CGFAA. Without
To help FEMA improve the                        this information, the report is less useful to the Congress and other
usefulness of its reports to the                stakeholders.
Congress, GAO recommends that
the Secretary of Homeland Security
require the Emergency
Preparedness and Response
Directorate to include summary
information on amounts claimed,
approved, and paid and remaining
estimated program liabilities in its
annual report to the Congress.

The Department of Homeland
Security’s Emergency
Preparedness and Response
Directorate concurred with our
recommendation to include the
summary-level information in its
next annual report.



www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?GAO-04-129.

To view the full product, including the scope
and methodology, click on the link above.
For more information, contact
Linda M. Calbom at (202) 512-9508 or
calboml@gao.gov.
Contents



Letter                                                                                                                1
                           Results in Brief                                                                           2
                           Background                                                                                 2
                           Scope and Methodology                                                                      5
                           Policies and Procedures for Claim Processing Were Followed                                 7
                           Progress Made in Addressing Prior Recommendations, but
                             Reporting Could Be Improved                                                           9
                           Conclusions                                                                            11
                           Recommendation for Executive Action                                                    11
                           Agency Comments                                                                        11


Appendixes
             Appendix I:   Comments from the Department of Homeland Security                                      13


Table                      Table 1: Summary of CGFAA Approved and Estimated Claims to Be
                                    Paid as of September 9, 2003                                                      4




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                           Page i                                                GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
A
United States General Accounting Office
Washington, D.C. 20548



                                    December 24, 2003                                                                              Leter




                                    The Honorable Ted Stevens
                                    Chairman
                                    The Honorable Robert C. Byrd
                                    Ranking Minority Member
                                    Committee on Appropriations
                                    United States Senate

                                    The Honorable C.W. Bill Young
                                    Chairman
                                    The Honorable David R. Obey
                                    Ranking Minority Member
                                    Committee on Appropriations
                                    House of Representatives

                                    On July 13, 2000, the President signed into law the Cerro Grande Fire
                                    Assistance Act (CGFAA).1 CGFAA established the Office of Cerro Grande
                                    Fire Claims (OCGFC) and directed the Federal Emergency Management
                                    Agency (FEMA)2 to expeditiously investigate claims, determine damages,
                                    and compensate the victims of the Cerro Grande fire in northern New
                                    Mexico. CGFAA also requires FEMA to submit an annual report to the
                                    Congress by August 28 that provides information on claims submitted and
                                    amounts paid during the year. CGFAA, as amended,3 requires that we audit
                                    all claim payments made under the act, including subrogation claims4 made
                                    by insurance companies, and report the results of our audit within 120 days
                                    of the issuance of FEMA’s annual report. In this our third report under
                                    CGFAA, we determined whether FEMA (1) paid fire claims in accordance
                                    with applicable policies and procedures and (2) implemented corrective
                                    actions to address our prior report’s recommendations, including
                                    determining if FEMA properly reported claim payments to the Congress.



                                    1
                                     Pub. L. No. 106-246, Div. C, Title I, 114 Stat. 511, 583 (2000).
                                    2
                                    As of March 2003, FEMA became part of the Emergency Preparedness and Response
                                    Directorate of the Department of Homeland Security.
                                    3
                                     Pub. L. No. 107-73, Title IV, § 428, 115 Stat. 651, 697 (2001).
                                    4
                                     A subrogation claim is the right of one who has paid an obligation that another should have
                                    paid to be indemnified by the other. In this case, insurance companies and possibly others
                                    paid claims that the federal government is responsible for paying.




                                    Page 1                                                      GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
Results in Brief   Based on the results of our statistical testing, FEMA processed and paid its
                   claims in accordance with its policies and procedures that were established
                   and in place at the time the claims were reviewed and processed. These
                   procedures included obtaining and reviewing proper documentation of
                   claims, approvals, and release forms. For the period from August 29, 2002,
                   through June 30, 2003, FEMA approved $40 million in claims for payment,
                   including the initial payment of subrogation claims.

                   FEMA addressed our prior recommendations related to reconciling
                   claimed amounts approved with actual amounts paid. In response to our
                   May 2003 report,5 FEMA compared the amounts approved for payment to
                   the amounts actually paid for each claim from inception through June 30,
                   2003. It also performed complete reconciliations of total amounts
                   approved and paid through the same period and as of August 31, 2003. In
                   addition, in our prior report, we noted that FEMA improperly reported
                   unreconciled claim amounts approved for payment as amounts actually
                   paid. In its 2003 annual report, FEMA properly identified claimed amounts
                   as approved amounts for payment rather than actual amounts paid in a
                   schedule that was included in its annual report to the Congress. However,
                   FEMA no longer summarized the amounts claimed, amounts approved, and
                   the remaining program liabilities in its report to the Congress and did not
                   include any information on claims paid as is required by CGFAA. Without
                   this information, the report is less useful to the Congress and other
                   stakeholders.

                   We are making a recommendation that addresses this reporting issue. In
                   commenting on a draft of the report, the Director of the Recovery Division
                   of the Department of Homeland Security’s Emergency Preparedness and
                   Response Directorate agreed with our recommendation to include the
                   summary-level information in its next annual report.



Background         On May 4, 2000, the National Park Service initiated a prescribed burn on
                   federal land at Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico, in an effort to
                   reduce the threat of wildfires in the area. The plan was to burn up to 900
                   acres. On May 5, 2000, the prescribed burn exceeded the capabilities of the


                   5
                    U.S. General Accounting Office, FEMA Cerro Grande Claims: Payments Properly
                   Processed, but Reported Payments Somewhat Overstated, GAO-03-623 (Washington, D.C.:
                   May 8, 2003).




                   Page 2                                             GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
National Park Service, spread to other federal and nonfederal land, and was
characterized as a wildfire. On May 13, 2000, the President issued a major
disaster declaration, and subsequently, the Secretary of the Interior and the
National Park Service assumed responsibility for the fire and the loss of
federal, state, local, tribal, and private property. The fire, known as the
Cerro Grande fire, burned approximately 48,000 acres in four counties and
two Indian pueblos, destroyed over 200 residential structures, and forced
the evacuation of more than 18,000 residents.

On July 13, 2000, the President signed CGFAA into law. Under CGFAA,
each claimant is entitled to be compensated by the United States
government for certain injuries and damages that resulted from the Cerro
Grande fire. CGFAA required that FEMA promulgate and publish
implementing regulations for the Cerro Grande program within 45 days of
enactment of the law. On August 28, 2000, FEMA published Disaster
Assistance: Cerro Grande Fire Assistance: Interim Final Rule in the
Federal Register (Interim Rule).6 FEMA modified the Interim Rule with a
set of implementing policies and procedures on November 13, 2000. FEMA
updated these policies and procedures in January and March 2001. After
reviewing public comments on the Interim Rule, FEMA finalized and
published Disaster Assistance: Cerro Grande Fire Assistance Final Rule
(Final Rule) on March 21, 2001.7

The Congress initially appropriated $455 million to FEMA for the payment
of such claims and $45 million for the administration of the Cerro Grande
program.8 In March 2002, FEMA requested, but did not receive, additional
appropriated funding of $80 million to cover additional claims and
administrative costs. In December 2002, FEMA revised its estimate and
requested additional appropriated funding of $155 million, including
$5 million for administrative costs. The revised estimate was based on
more complete claim information since the final date to submit claims had
passed on August 28, 2002. In February 2003, FEMA was appropriated an
additional $90 million, of which up to $5 million may be made available for




6
65 Fed. Reg. 52260, 44 C.F.R. Part 295 (2000).
7
66 Fed. Reg. 15948, 44 C.F.R. Part 295 (2001).
8
CGFAA, Sec. 105, 114 Stat. 590.




Page 3                                           GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
administrative purposes.9 FEMA stated that only $2 million was used in
fiscal year 2003 for administrative purposes. In October 2003, FEMA
received an additional appropriation of $38.062 million, of which 5 percent
may be made available for administrative costs.10 After FEMA allocated a
specific amount for administrative costs, it had a maximum of
$578.6 million available for the payment of claims under CGFAA. During
the audit, FEMA provided revised claim data that reflected the amounts
shown in table 1.



Table 1: Summary of CGFAA Approved and Estimated Claims to Be Paid as of
September 9, 2003

Dollars in thousands
                                                                             Claim amounts
Amounts approved for payment from inception                                          $505,698
Estimated additional liabilities:
Pending claims                                                                          3,705
Appeals                                                                                12,973
Mitigation                                                                              1,138
Projected liabilities                                                                   9,339
Subrogation claims--approved but unpaid                                                 1,634
Subrogation claims--unapproved amounts                                                 53,160
Total estimated additional liabilities                                                $81,949
Total actual and estimated claims to be paid                                         $587,647
Source: FEMA OCGFC.


The claimed amounts that FEMA approved for payment through
September 9, 2003, included $51.5 million of approved subrogation claims.
Pending claims included expected payments for individual, business,
governmental, and pueblo claims, and projected liabilities consisted of
potential future appeals, potential arbitrations, and contingency for judicial
review.



9
Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and Independent
Agencies Appropriations Act, 2003, Pub. L. No. 108-7, Div. K, Title III, 117 Stat. 474, 516.
10
 Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2004, Pub. L. No. 108-90, Title III,
117 Stat. 1137, 1150 (2003).




Page 4                                                   GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
              CGFAA requires that FEMA submit an annual report to the Congress that
              provides information about claims submitted under the act. This annual
              report is to include the amounts claimed, a description of the nature of the
              claims, and the status or disposition of the claims, including the amounts
              paid. FEMA’s report is to be issued annually by August 28. CGFAA, as
              amended, requires that we conduct annual audits on the payment of all
              claims made and report the results of the audits to the Congress within 120
              days of FEMA’s issuance of its annual report. The act also requires that our
              report include a review of all subrogation claims for which insurance
              companies have been paid. In May 2003, we issued our second report on
              the audit of Cerro Grande claim payments made from inception through
              August 28, 2002. The report stated that FEMA properly processed and paid
              claims but overstated amounts paid in its report to the Congress and made
              two recommendations regarding the reconciliation of the approved and
              paid amounts in its payment approval and accounting systems.11 FEMA
              issued its most recent annual report on August 28, 2003, with claim
              amounts approved for payment through June 30, 2003.



Scope and     In performing our review, we considered the Standards for Internal
              Control in the Federal Government.12 To reaffirm our understanding of the
Methodology   claim review and payment process established by OCGFC and to follow up
              on the changes made to this process since our last report, we interviewed
              FEMA officials and analyzed data used in FEMA’s annual report to the
              Congress and data used by FEMA to determine the estimated claim liability.
              We also reviewed the following:

              • the requirements of CGFAA;

              • the final regulations published in the Federal Register;

              • FEMA’s policies and procedures manual;

              • a summary of FEMA’s unpaid claim liability estimates as of September 9,
                2003;



              11
                   GAO-03-623.
              12
               U.S. General Accounting Office, Standards for Internal Control in the Federal
              Government, GAO/AIMD-00-21.3.1 (Washington, D.C.: November 1999).




              Page 5                                                GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
• FEMA’s fiscal year 2002 audited financial statements; and

• the fiscal year 2003 approvals, payments, and other documentation
  concerning the Cerro Grande program and submitted claims.

Finally, we selected a statistical sample from the population of all partial
and final claimed amounts approved for payment from August 28, 2002,
through June 30, 2003, to determine whether FEMA processed, approved,
and paid the Cerro Grande fire claims in accordance with its applicable
policies and procedures.

We selected a dollar unit (statistical) sample of 99 intervals representing 84
claims totaling $21,000,928 that were approved for payment from a
population of 1,868 reported partial and final claim amounts that had been
approved for payment from August 28, 2002, through June 30, 2003 (FEMA’s
cutoff date for the annual report to the Congress), to test specific control
activities, such as adequacy of supporting documentation, evidence of
claims manager and approving official review, and actual payment by
FEMA. We obtained and reviewed related supporting documentation for
the approved claim payments that were selected from OCGFC’s payment
approval system.

In order to follow up on FEMA’s corrective actions to address our prior
year recommendations, as well as determine whether FEMA properly
reported claim payment information to the Congress, we reviewed
OCGFC’s reconciliations of claimed amounts that were approved by
OCGFC for payment from its payment approval system and the actual
claim payments made by FEMA’s Disaster Finance Center (DFC) and
reported in FEMA’s accounting system.

Our work was conducted in Denton, Texas,13 and Washington, D.C., from
September 2003 through October 2003 in accordance with generally
accepted government auditing standards. We requested agency comments
on a draft of this report from the Under Secretary of the Department of
Homeland Security’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate
or his designee. The Director of the Recovery Division of the Department
of Homeland Security’s Emergency Preparedness and Response


13
 In December 2002, OCGFC closed its headquarters operations in Santa Fe, New Mexico,
and moved the remaining claims operations to FEMA’s National Processing Center in
Denton, Texas.




Page 6                                              GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
                       Directorate provided written comments on our draft, which are reprinted
                       in appendix I. We discuss the written comments in the “Agency Comments
                       and Our Evaluation” section of this report.



Policies and           Based on the results of our statistical testing, FEMA processed, approved,
                       and paid its claims in accordance with its guidelines that were established
Procedures for Claim   and in place at the time the claims were reviewed and processed. FEMA’s
Processing Were        guidelines for the approval and payment of claims specify the following
                       steps.
Followed
                       • An injured party submits a Notice of Loss (NOL)14 to OCGFC to initiate
                         the claim payment process.

                       • Upon receipt of the NOL, a claim reviewer contacts the claimant to
                         discuss the claim, explain the claims process, and determine the best
                         means to substantiate the loss or damages.

                       • The claim reviewer then assigns a claim number and enters the
                         information into OCGFC’s claim-processing database, the Automated
                         Claim Information System, and begins the process of verifying the
                         victim’s claim.

                       • Upon completion of its review, the claim reviewer prepares a claim
                         payment recommendation package, which specifies that a claimant’s
                         injuries or damages occurred as a result of the Cerro Grande fire and
                         that claimed amounts are eligible for compensation under CGFAA.

                       • The claim reviewer also inputs reserve amounts equal to the total
                         claimed amounts that he/she expects to be paid into the claim-
                         processing database.

                       • A claim supervisor reviews to ensure that a proper investigation of the
                         claim occurred and that the proper documentation exists, among other
                         things, and approves each recommendation package.




                       14
                         The NOL describes in general terms the types of injury, damages, or both a claimant has
                       incurred as a result of the fire.




                       Page 7                                                 GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
• Upon approval of the claim payment recommendation package, an
  Approval for Payment form is completed and sent to an OCGFC
  authorizing official for review and approval.

• The Comptroller receives a Schedule of Payments, consisting of
  amounts approved for payment, and reviews a sample of requested and
  approved payments.

• The Comptroller then approves the Schedule of Payments, records the
  approved amounts in OCGFC’s payment approval system, and sends the
  schedules to FEMA’s DFC for additional manual processing.

• FEMA records all payments in its accounting system, the Integrated
  Financial Management Information System, which is not linked to
  OCGFC’s payment approval system, before funds are disbursed by
  Treasury.

In addition to the above steps from the claim review process, which is used
for both partial payments15 and final payments, the claim reviewer prepares
a Proof of Loss (POL) form prior to processing a final payment. This form
summarizes all amounts recommended for payment, including those
amounts previously paid through a partial payment. The POL form must be
signed by the claimant subject to the provisions of 18 U.S.C. §1001, which
establishes criminal penalties for false statements. Once a signed POL
form is received, an OCGFC authorized official sends a Letter of Final
Determination to tell the claimant the total amount of compensation being
offered under CGFAA. Accompanying this letter is a Release and
Certification form that the claimant signs if he or she accepts the OCGFC
compensation determination, thereby releasing the federal government
from any additional claims arising from the Cerro Grande fire.16 Upon
receipt of the signed Release and Certification form, FEMA processes and
mails a claimant’s final payment.




15
 In order to get assistance to fire survivors as soon as possible, CGFAA allows for claimants
to receive partial payments before the start of the rebuilding process. Partial payments may
be based upon actual receipts or estimates. Final payments are made only after the entire
claim review process is completed.
16
 Under certain circumstances, claims may be reopened notwithstanding the submission of
a Release and Certification form pursuant to 44 C.F.R. Sec. 295.34 (2002).




Page 8                                                  GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
                       Our review of the statistically selected sample of approved claims
                       determined that the above steps were performed in accordance with
                       FEMA’s established approval and payment process. For the period from
                       August 29, 2002, through June 30, 2003, FEMA approved claims in the
                       amount of $40 million for payment,17 including the partial payment of
                       approved subrogation claims filed by insurance companies.



Progress Made in       FEMA addressed our prior recommendations related to reconciling the
                       reported amounts approved for payment to amounts actually paid. FEMA
Addressing Prior       reconciled the total amounts approved for payment to the amounts actually
Recommendations, but   paid as of June 30, 2003, which was the cutoff date for its annual report,
                       and as of August 31, 2003. FEMA officials stated they would continue to
Reporting Could Be     perform these reconciliations periodically. In reviewing FEMA’s annual
Improved               report to the Congress required by CGFAA, we found that while
                       improvements were made in how FEMA represented the detailed claim
                       information in its report, claim information was no longer summarized in
                       the report, making it less useful and transparent.

                       In our May 2003 report, we recommended that FEMA reconcile the
                       amounts approved for payment in its payment approval system to amounts
                       actually paid in its accounting system and correct all identified errors in its
                       payment approval system. We also recommended that FEMA perform
                       monthly reconciliations of the approved and paid amounts for as long as
                       both systems are used to track and report paid amounts or request
                       additional funding.

                       In response to our recommendations, OCGFC implemented a detailed
                       process that consisted of compiling the claimed amounts by individual
                       claims from both the accounting system and the payment approval system
                       and matching the amounts approved and paid for each claim. It also
                       performed an overall reconciliation of the total amounts approved and paid
                       through June 30, 2003.

                       In performing the detailed matching process, OCGFC compared the
                       individual claim approval data and claim payment data from August 28,
                       2000, through February 19, 2003, and performed periodic comparisons of
                       individual claims from February 20, 2003, to May 31, 2003, and from June 1

                       17
                        From inception of CGFAA through June 30, 2003, FEMA reported a total of $462 million in
                       claims approved for payment.




                       Page 9                                               GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
to June 30, 2003. When OCGFC identified differences between amounts
reported as paid by FEMA’s accounting system and OCGFC’s payment
approval system, it recorded the adjustments and corrections into its
payment approval system to eliminate duplication and made note of data
entry errors, which did not require adjustments. The identified differences
generally consisted of the following:

• Duplicate approved amounts that represented a claimed amount that
  was approved for payment more than once. For example, in one case
  OCGFC approved a final payment of $934,802. Since the claimant
  appealed, the amount was not paid. While the claim was being
  appealed, OCGFC approved a partial payment of $919,802. Both of
  these amounts appeared as approved payments in its payment approval
  system. After we brought this duplicate approval to OCGFC’s attention
  during our prior review, it subsequently removed the original unpaid
  amount from its system during its claims comparison process later in
  fiscal year 2003.

• Data entry errors by claim reviewers when entering data into the
  payment approval or accounting systems. For example, if an incorrect
  identification number was used to process a payment, no comparison
  could be made between the approved amount recorded by claim
  number in the approval system and the paid amount recorded by
  claimant’s identification number in the accounting system. To resolve
  the situation, OCGFC listed the approved amount as an unmatched item
  until it located the matching payment that was recorded to a different
  identification number.

In addition to these comparisons of individual claim amounts, FEMA’s
Financial and Acquisition Management Division (FAMD) performed a
complete reconciliation of the total amounts that were approved for
payment and paid as of June 30, 2003. We reviewed this overall
reconciliation of the total claim amounts approved and paid under CGFAA,
from inception through June 30, 2003, and found that all corrections and
adjustments identified during OCGFC’s comparison were made. FAMD
also performed a similar reconciliation of total approved and paid amounts
through August 31, 2003, and stated that it plans to perform this overall
reconciliation more regularly, at least quarterly.

In our prior report, we noted that FEMA improperly reported unreconciled
amounts that were approved for payment in its prior annual reports to the
Congress as amounts actually paid. In its 2003 annual report to the



Page 10                                      GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
                     Congress, FEMA continued to include claimed amounts approved for
                     payment in a detailed schedule of claim information, but it properly
                     identified the amounts as such instead of as paid or expended amounts.
                     However, FEMA’s report no longer summarized information on the
                     amounts claimed, amounts approved, and the estimated liabilities for the
                     remainder of the program. In addition, FEMA did not include any
                     information on claims paid as is required under CGFAA. Without this
                     information, FEMA’s annual report is less useful to the Congress and other
                     stakeholders.



Conclusions          FEMA strengthened its internal controls over its claim approvals and
                     payments by implementing a process to reconcile its detailed approval
                     information to its payment information. This helps improve the accuracy
                     of claims information included in its systems and reports to the Congress.
                     The usefulness and transparency of the report would be further improved if
                     it included summary claim activity information.



Recommendation for   We recommend that the Secretary of Homeland Security direct the Under
                     Secretary of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate to
Executive Action     include summary-level claim information in its annual report to the
                     Congress, including amounts claimed, approved, and paid and remaining
                     estimated program liabilities.



Agency Comments      FEMA, in a letter from the Director of the Recovery Division of the
                     Department of Homeland Security’s Emergency Preparedness and
                     Response Directorate, agreed with our recommendation to include
                     summary-level claim information on amounts claimed, approved, and paid
                     and remaining estimated program liabilities, if any, in its next annual report
                     to the Congress. The Department of Homeland Security’s comments are
                     reprinted in appendix I.


                     We are sending copies of this report to the congressional committees and
                     subcommittees responsible for issues related to FEMA and the Department
                     of Homeland Security, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland
                     Security, the Under Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security’s
                     Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate, and the Inspector
                     General of the Department of Homeland Security. Copies will also be made


                     Page 11                                        GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
available to others upon request. In addition, this report is available at no
charge on GAO’s Web site at http://www.gao.gov.

If you have any questions about this report, please contact me at (202) 512-
9508 or Steven Haughton, Assistant Director, at (202) 512-5999. The other
key contributors to this assignment were Christine Fant and Estelle Tsay.




Linda M. Calbom
Director, Financial Management and Assurance




Page 12                                        GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
Appendix I

Comments from the Department of Homeland                   Appendx
                                                                 ies




Security                                                    Appendx
                                                                  Ii




(190109)     Page 13         GAO-04-129 CGFAA Claim Payments
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