LIHEAP Program Integrity

The June 2010 release of the Government Accountability Office (GAO) report entitled Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program: Greater Fraud Prevention Controls Are Needed was a significant development in LIHEAP history. Upon the request of a U.S. Congressman, the GAO analyzed LIHEAP data from seven states (Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Virginia) for fraud indicators, interviewed federal and state officials, performed investigations, and conducted proactive testing in two states (Maryland and West Virginia) using a fictitious company, individuals, addresses, and documents.

The seven states were primarily selected based on the size of their LIHEAP grant and availability of a centralized LIHEAP database. The GAO report set in motion a process that made Program Integrity a central focus of LIHEAP grantees.

Background Materials on LIHEAP Program Integrity

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) Report

"The selected states do not have an effective design for a comprehensive fraud prevention framework. In fact, the states lack key efforts in all three crucial elements of a well-designed fraud prevention system: preventive controls, detection and monitoring, and investigations and prosecutions."

"...We believe that these are key preventive control measures that states should integrate in their application processes as long as the costs of these controls do not outweigh the benefits."

Recommendations for Executive Action

HHS Responses to GAO Report

Page last updated: August 14, 2015