An audit released last week by the District of Columbia's inspector general found that the D.C. HIV/AIDS Administration fails to adequately monitor D.C. AIDS service organizations, often prepares "questionable" reports, and even occasionally funds groups not involved with AIDS services, The Washington Post reports. Among the audit's findings were that the administration has disbursed $8 million in grants to 19 organizations that do not have permission to operate in D.C. because they lack appropriate business licenses or had their incorporation papers revoked. The administration also rarely made quarterly visits as required to providers that receive District funds, nor did it write reports on the findings of visits that did occur, according to the audit.
The audit also discovered that although federal law requires any agency receiving more than $300,000 in federal funds to undergo annual independent audits, three groups that continue to receive District AIDS funds--including one that received more than $9 million in funding--failed to submit audits to the D.C. HIV/AIDS Administration in 2002 and 2003. Six groups that received District AIDS funds could not be located at the addresses on their approved grant applications, and two groups that received substantial District AIDS funding provide no HIV-related services, according to the audit.
District heath director Gregg Pane says he "basically agreed" with the audit's findings and has submitted written recommendations for improvement at the D.C. HIV/AIDS administration. Although many of the problems detailed in the audit have already been addressed during the past two years, "there are still lessons to be learned," Pane told the Post. "I think some of these are still issues today."