On April 21, Neil Barofksy, the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP), issued his quarterly report to Congress as required by the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA). The report notes the “tremendous expansion in the scope, scale and complexity of TARP” and makes the following recommendations:
- All TARP recipients should be required to report on their actual use of funds.
- A number of steps should be taken in order to mitigate the potential for fraud and abuse related to the Troubled Asset Relief Program, Public-Private Investment Program and Home Affordable Modification Program.
On the same day, the Congressional Oversight Panel, which was created pursuant to EESA and is chaired by Professor Elizabeth Warren, held a hearing at which Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner testified about the Treasury’s use of TARP funds. Chairman Warren noted in her opening remarks that there was significant public “anger and frustration” regarding the TARP program. Treasury Secretary Geithner defended the Treasury’s use of the TARP funds, in part, by stating that a failure to take the actions it has taken would have “resulted in higher unemployment and more business failure, greater damage to our future growth and productivity, and as a result higher long term budget deficits.”
Click here for information on the Congressional Oversight Panel hearing.