August 22, 2011
The Department of Energy's Weatherization Assistance Program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in the State of Missouri
The Department of Energy's (Department) Weatherization Assistance Program (Weatherization Program) received $5 billion under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to improve the energy efficiency of the homes of low-income individuals, of which the State of Missouri received a 3-year Weatherization Program grant of $128 million. We initiated this audit to determine if the State of Missouri had adequate safeguards in place to ensure that the Weatherization Program was managed efficiently and effectively. We found that the State of Missouri had not always adequately managed its Weatherization Program and noted problems in the quality of weatherization work. These problems resulted from a combination of program weaknesses, including inadequate final inspections conducted by local agencies, ineffective follow-up on systemic issues identified in re-inspections, and incomplete training of local agency and contractor personnel. These weaknesses, if uncorrected, could pose health and safety risks to residents, hinder production, and increase program costs. Similar to issues we identified in a series of reports on weatherization programs in other states, this report offers valuable lessons learned related to identifying and addressing systemic quality problems. We made a number of recommendations designed to improve the Department's administration of the Weatherization Program.