The Rural Utilities Service (RUS) is a Rural Development agency within the Department of Agriculture (USDA) that administers the Water and Waste Disposal System Program and provides loans and grants for sewer, storm water, and solid waste disposal systems in cities and towns having populations up to 10,000 people.
As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), Congress provided USDA with $28 billion in funding. Approximately2 $3.8 billion of those funds were designated for RUS’ Water and Waste Disposal System Program.
Based on OIG’s review, project construction usually did not immediately follow the obligation of funds for the projects in our sample. OIG also determined that, prior to the construction phase, project spending may be minimal and few jobs created. OIG found that 13 of the projects reported expenditures totaling $28.6 million as of March 31, 2011. RUS estimated that 3,384 jobs would be created or saved from OIG’s sample of 22 water and waste disposal projects. However, as of March 31, 2011, a total of only 178 actual jobs had been reported on Recovery.gov as created or saved.