Today's Washington Post reports that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has continued to make subsidy payments to farmers who are deceased.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture distributed $1.1 billion over seven years to the estates or companies of deceased farmers and routinely failed to conduct reviews required to ensure that the payments were properly made, according to a government report.
In a selection of 181 cases from 1999 to 2005, the Government Accountability Office found that officials approved payments without any review 40 percent of the time. . . .
In a letter responding to the GAO report, the Agriculture Department said that the payments were not necessarily examples of fraud or abuse and that auditors did not prove any specific cases of cheating. The department's field offices defended the practice of routinely paying dead farmers' estates without fully investigating the claims, citing staff shortages and competing priorities. The agency also said that any overpayments would amount to less than 1 percent of farm subsidies paid between 1999 and 2005.
Related Posts (on one page):
- The Case for Paying Dead Farmers Not to Farm Instead of Living Ones:
- Paying Dead Farmers Not to Farm: