The Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is the largest federal stimulus package ever and approximately three times the size of the 2009 landmark American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) which provided more than $800 billion in stimulus funds to revitalize the American economy.
ARRA’s impact on transparency and accountability for federal spending is undeniable. Lessons learned and leading practices of ARRA should be used by agencies to successfully manage CARES Act funds. This paper summarizes the following lessons learned for government financial managers and auditors to consider:
- Be able to report on outcomes
- Recognize management challenges from accelerated roll out
- Remember the recipient
- Prepare for impacts to financial reporting
- Emphasize strong risk management