Press Release

For Immediate ReleaseContact:  Sean Rushton or Melissa Naudin
January 23, 2001(202) 467-5300


Washington, D.C. - The United States General Accounting Office (GAO) has implicitly reaffirmed Citizens Against Government Waste's (CAGW) existence with the release of the high-risk list. GAO's 2001 Major Management and Challenges and Program Risk: A Government Prospective i.e. high-risk list reintroduces the notion that as much as President George W. Bush society changes, governmental problems remain the same.  

The GAO has outlined high-risk groups for the past decade and although the federal government claimed to have made steps towards improvement many of these agencies face the same problems.  This clearly shows that the outgoing administration over the past eight years did little to address the problems and even less to correct them.  Even though President George Bush, the elder, saw the creation of this fix it manual for the government, President George W. Bush, the younger, can now address the problems and hopefully solve them before the end of his term.

"Inefficiencies in the federal government are not a surprise but it is a disappointment that we still are not able to address these repeated issues," CAGW President Thomas A. Schatz said. 

According to the report eight of the programs have been listed since the very first report in 1990.  Another eight have taken their place in this 'Hall of Shame' list for the past five years.  The 2001 list currently holds 22 agencies ranging from the Environment Protection Agency to the United States Postal Service.  Strategic Human Capital Management is the sole addition to the high-risk list this year.  Chairman Fred Thompson stated his concern about this year's list and noted that government management remains trapped in the 19th century. 

The new addition to the list may in fact underlie the core problem and reason for the stagnation of many of the listed agencies.  Without the ability to manage its human capital our federal government will continue to face difficulty in the years ahead.  Roughly one third of the federally employed will be eligible for retirement in the next five years causing millions of dollars of liabilities for the federal treasury.  This fact has opened the eyes of many people within the federal government who are concerned of the imbalances of experience and skills.  

"The federal government should look to the private sector to see how they address personnel issues," Schatz added.

If we continue to not get the best people in our federal government it's no wonder that many of these obstacles exist. With the dawn of a new President focused on changing the political tone and cleaning up Washington, the 107th Congress has the ability to work with this administration to resolve some if not all these problems.  

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