Sen. Carper Reacts to Department of Defense Inspector General Report on Defense Department’s Improper Payments

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management, released the following statement reacting to a report from the Department of Defense Inspector General on the Department of Defense’s improper payments:

“We need to look in every nook and cranny of federal spending – domestic and defense– to find ways to cut waste and fraud.  The Department of Defense spends about a trillion dollars annually and this report shows that we still don’t have a good understanding of just how much taxpayer money is lost to waste and fraud.  We do know that the Pentagon has to do a much better job in identifying and eliminating improper payments, which my subcommittee examined in a hearing last fall.  Part of the problem, we found is that there are serious flaws in the Pentagon’s accounting systems that prevent the Department of Defense from effectively auditing their books, let alone identifying and preventing improper payments.  This is clearly unacceptable.  Fortunately, a law I worked to get enacted last year – the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act –will require the Department of Defense to sharpen its pencils and do a much better job keeping track of the billions of taxpayer dollars they spend daily.”