What GAO Discovered
The State Small Enterprise Credit score Initiative (SSBCI) gives funds to eligible jurisdictions—states, territories, the District of Columbia, and tribal governments—to help small enterprise lending and funding packages by its capital program. Eligible jurisdictions can also apply for technical help funding (comparable to for authorized, accounting, and monetary advisory providers) to help sure companies that apply to an SSBCI program or one other authorities small enterprise program.
The Division of the Treasury, which administers SSBCI, prolonged utility deadlines for the capital and technical help packages a number of instances (see determine). All 50 states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia submitted purposes for capital program funds, and as of September 30, 2022, Treasury had authorised 31 purposes and disbursed $1.3 billion.
Utility Deadline Extensions for State Small Enterprise Credit score Initiative, March 2021–March 2023
Partly due to these deadline extensions and the time wanted to overview and approve quite a few purposes, Treasury has taken longer than anticipated to disburse SSBCI funds. Important SSBCI implementation steps stay, comparable to reviewing remaining purposes and implementing compliance monitoring and efficiency measurement plans. Nonetheless, Treasury’s planning efforts haven’t totally integrated sure finest practices GAO beforehand developed for dependable venture scheduling. For instance, Treasury’s work plan has not recognized which employees or contractors could be answerable for every exercise. Totally incorporating these finest practices may assist restrict the potential for delays and assist guarantee well timed disbursement and oversight of program funds.
Treasury has been creating a framework to help and monitor jurisdictions’ compliance with SSBCI pointers. In November 2022, Treasury revealed compliance and oversight requirements for jurisdictions to make use of for his or her packages. Officers mentioned they’ve been constructing on procedures used for the unique SSBCI and deliberate to develop compliance monitoring procedures (for Treasury to make use of) by December 31, 2022. Treasury additionally has revealed information assortment and reporting necessities for SSBCI and has been creating key indicators to measure program efficiency.
Why GAO Did This Examine
SSBCI was reauthorized by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) to help small companies recovering from the financial results of the COVID-19 pandemic. Congress appropriated $10 billion for this system.
The CARES Act and ARPA embrace provisions for GAO to watch the federal authorities’s efforts to reply to COVID-19. Amongst its targets, this report examines Treasury’s efforts to finish key implementation steps for SSBCI and handle program dangers and measure program efficiency.
GAO reviewed related laws and SSBCI documentation and analyzed Treasury information on allotted and disbursed funds. GAO additionally interviewed Treasury officers, representatives of 4 territories, and representatives of nongeneralizable samples of 12 states and three tribal governments—chosen to symbolize a spread of geographic areas and different traits.