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GAO Report Affirms That NASA Has Effective Mechanisms for Coordinating with Other Federal Agencies and Avoiding Duplicative Efforts

Press Release From: House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009

image (Washington, DC) - Today, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report, NASA: Briefing on National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Programs and Associated Activities. GAO was directed by The NASA Authorization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-422), which originated in the House Committee on Science and Technology, to assess the effectiveness of policies and procedures put in place to ensure that NASA's programs and activities are not duplicative of similar efforts within the federal government.

After reviewing agency policies, procedures, coordination and collaboration mechanisms, and selecting three NASA areas for in-depth review, namely higher education, fundamental aeronautics, and Earth Science projects related to climate and weather research, GAO found that:

No duplication was found in the areas selected for an in-depth review; Policies, procedures and mechanisms are in place to avoid duplication; and NASA personnel actively seek to coordinate and to avoid duplication with other federal agencies.

"While I strongly believe that NASA should be given the resources and tools necessary to do all the things this nation has asked it to do, I don't view investing in NASA as a blank check. This Committee is cognizant of its responsibility for ensuring that NASA is being a good steward of the resources given to it by American taxpayers," stated Committee Chairman Bart Gordon (D-TN). "This GAO report provides concrete confirmation that NASA is not engaging in duplicative activities and is appropriately coordinating with other federal agencies."

"I am reassured that GAO found no instances of duplication by NASA and that mechanisms are in place to encourage collaborative activities with other relevant federal agencies. That is welcome news, and I expected no less from the agency," said Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee Chairwoman Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ). "Yet using the funds it's been given effectively is only half the equation. As the Augustine review panel made clear last month, NASA is going to need more resources if it is to carry out the exploration program endorsed by successive Congresses, as well as the agency's other important initiatives. Now, more than ever, I believe that NASA needs to be provided with a robust budget in order for it to succeed."

For more information, visit the Committee's website.

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