Millions of federal dollars slated for smart grid projects were not effectively managed, according to a new report from the Energy Department’s inspector general.
The department’s Smart Grid Demonstration Program received nearly $700 million in funding through the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The IG looked at 11 projects that were awarded $279 million of the Recovery Act money and $10 million in other funds. Of that, $12.3 million in reimbursements were found to lack proper documentation
Money allocated by the program faced multiple obstacles, and the program didn’t effectively coordinate with other similar initiatives, the IG found. For instance, the audit identified instances when money was awarded to the same recipient twice.
The IG said that the program was at “risk for not meeting its objectives” if significant improvements were not made.The Energy Department has been under intense scrutiny since a scandal surrounding questionable loan guarantees to solar power company Solyndra.