NCUA OIG reports no agency programs susceptible to ‘significant’ improper payments

A review by the inspector general’s office at the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) shows that none of the agency’s programs are considered to be susceptible to “significant” improper payments as defined by the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act (IPERA), the IG said in a recent letter to the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.

The IPERA required federal agency inspectors general to annually assess and report on their agencies’ improper payment risk assessments, in accordance with specific IPERA criteria. “Significant” improper payments, the NCUA IG wrote, are defined as gross annual improper payments in a program exceeding both 1.5% of program outlays and $10 million of all program payments made during the year, or $100 million regardless of the percentage.

The IPERA requires the publication of annual reports addressing IPERA requirements, conduct risk assessments, and (where relevant) publish improper payment estimates, publish corrective plans, publish and meet improper payment reduction targets, and achieve an improper payment rate of less than 10%.

NCUA IG James Hagen, in a letter last Thursday to Senate committee Chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), said his office reviewed the credit union regulator’s 2019 risk assessment of all of its programs and activities and its determination that these programs and activities have a low risk of significant improper payments. “To reach our final conclusion, we reviewed both the NCUA’s risk assessment and its 2019 annual report for compliance with IPERA requirements,” Hagen wrote. “We agree with the NCUA’s overall risk analysis and because the NCUA’s improper payment amount was below the statutory threshold, we have nothing further to review for compliance under IPERA. “

Letter to Senate Committee Chairman Johnson Regarding OIG Review of NCUA Compliance Under the Improper Payments Elimination Act (IPERA), April 23, 2020