July 20th, 2009
06:11 PM ET
6 years ago

TARP cop: Get tough on banks

WASHINGTON (CNNMoney.com) - The top cop tracking the $700 billion bailout program said Monday that he's concerned federal officials are ignoring his proposals for preventing tax dollars from being wasted or pilfered.

Neil Barofsky, the special inspector general overseeing the Troubled Asset Relief Program, released a 260-page report detailing a long list of concerns about government efforts to prop up hundreds of banks, Wall Street firms and auto companies.

The report criticizes the Treasury Department the most for its unwillingness to adopt some of his recommendations.

Barofsky cites two examples: He wants Treasury to force bailout recipients to keep track of how exactly they are spending TARP funds. He also wants officials to erect a "firewall" to prevent private investment managers - the kind hired to manage and invest taxpayer dollars - from taking advantage of insider knowledge.

"Although Treasury has taken some steps towards improving transparency in TARP programs, it has repeatedly failed to adopt recommendations that SIGTARP believes are essential to providing basic transparency and fulfill Treasury's stated commitment to implement TARP 'with the highest degree of accountability and transparency possible,' " the report stated.

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Filed under: CNNMoney.com • Economy • TARP
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