Daines Hails Passage of Legislation to Empower Federal Watchdogs

U.S. SENATE —U.S. Senator Steve Daines today hailed the bipartisan U.S. Senate passage of U.S. Senator Ben Sasse’s (R-NE) legislation to audit federal programs on behalf of taxpayers.

H.R. 72, the GAO Access and Oversight Act of 2017 will ensure that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) is able to access the National Directory of New Hires Database to audit key federal programs on behalf of taxpayers.   

“Government needs to be accountable to people it serves,” Daines stated. “Today we are removing red tape and allowing the federal watchdog to do its job.”

The Department of Health and Human Services has barred GAO’s access to the National Directory of New Hires (NDNH). From its creation, NDNH was meant to enforce child-support obligations by ensuring wage garnishments would occur even if the payer changed jobs and locations. With passage of H.R. 72, GAO can use NDNH records to audit government programs to determine whether those programs are abused by those who do not qualify for benefits. This bill promotes government efficiency and keeps Montanan tax dollars from being wasted.

H.R. 72 passed the U.S. House of Representatives on January 4.