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California Energy Resource Conservation and Development Comm. is not Prepared to Award and Monitor Recovery Act Funds and Lacks Control to Prevent Their Misuse
Elaine M. Howle (ed)
A review conducted by the Calif. Bureau of State Audits concerning the preparedness of the Calif. Energy Resources Conservation and Devt. Comm. (Energy Comm.) to receive and administer fed. Am. Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) funds awarded by the Dept. of Energy (DOE) for its State Energy Program). On Feb. 17, 2009, the fed. government enacted the Recovery Act for purposes that include preserving and creating jobs; promoting economic recovery; assisting those most affected by the recession; investing in transportation, environmental protection, and other infrastructure; and stabilizing state and local government budgets. This review found that as of Nov. 16, 2009, the Energy Comm. had entered into contracts totaling only $40 million despite having had access to $113 million of the $226 million in Recovery Act funds it has been awarded for the Energy Program. The Energy Comm. has been slow in developing guidelines, issuing requests for proposals (RFPs), and implementing the internal controls needed to administer the Energy Program. As a result, few Recovery Act dollars have been spent. The remaining $113 million in funds will be available to the Energy Comm. on Jan. 1, 2010. The Energy Comm. has approved the use of $51 million for Energy Program services, and of this amount has entered into contracts totaling about $40 million with subrecipients for only two of the eight subprograms it intends to finance with the Recovery Act funds; however, none of the $40 million has been spent. The State is at risk of either having the funds redirected by the DOE or awarding them in a compressed period of time without first establishing an adequate system of internal controls, which increases the risk that Recovery Act funds will be misused. Charts.
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