About Government Accountability Office

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) is making sure that taxpayers get their money's worth from the government. Formerly known as the General Accounting Office, the Government Accountability Office is the investigative arm of Congress, and, as the name suggests, it strives to ensure accountability in the legislative and executive branches of government. The independent and nonpartisan agency examines federal spending, advises Congress and heads of executive agencies about the effectiveness and responsiveness of government, evaluates federal programs, audits expenditures, and issues legal opinions. The GAO has an annual budget of more than $550 million.

Geographic Reach

Besides Washington DC, the GAO operates from 11 field offices in Georgia, Massachusetts, Illinois, Texas, Ohio, Colorado, Alabama, California, Virginia, and Washington.


The agency estimates that about 80% of its recommendations are implemented. It produces special publications to assist Congress and executive branch agencies by recommending corrections to problems in government programs and operations, identifying long-term trends, and raising concerns about the nation's fiscal imbalance.


The GAO's 2016-2020 strategies include preventing, detecting, and reporting fraud, waste, and abuse in GAO programs and operations in addition to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of its operations.

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Government Accountability Office

441 G St Nw
Washington, DC 20548-0001
Phone: 1 (202) 512-3000
Fax: 1 (202) 512-3373


  • Employer Type: Government Agency
  • COO: Patricia A. Dalton
  • Comptroller General of the United States: Gene L. Dodaro
  • CFO and Chief Administrative Officer: David Fisher

Major Office Locations

  • Washington, DC