The Heat is On

amaxwell@govexec.com

Federal agencies failing to develop acceptable strategic plans required under the Government Performance and Results Act may have their appropriations put on hold until they comply, Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, said Tuesday.

"This calls for some kind of hammer," said Stevens during a joint Appropriations/Governmental Affairs hearing. "We expect to get some results from this act."

GPRA, also known as the Results Act, is designed to focus agencies' funding on results, rather than just the intentions of programs. It requires agencies to set outcome goals, measure their performance and report on their accomplishments.

By Sept. 30, 1997 all major agencies must submit strategic plans to the Office of Management and Budget and Congress that include mission statements, outcome-based goals and an explanation of how the goals will be achieved. Before the plans are officially submitted, agencies must consult with congressional committees about them.

Some agencies are submitting draft plans that do not meet the standards set forth in the law, congressional leaders said on Tuesday. Still others haven't even submitted draft plans yet.

So far, NASA is the only agency to have submitted what Congress deems an acceptable plan. The Federal Emergency Management Agency, General Services Administration and Department of the Interior have submitted "minimally acceptable" plans. The plans of the Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of Personnel Management, the Small Business Administration, and the Agriculture Department are characterized as "poor," while the plans of the Agency for International Development, the Commerce Department and the Justice Department are still being reviewed.

OMB Director Franklin Raines told Senators at the joint hearing that he shared Stevens' concerns, but remained confident that agencies would eventually meet their commitments under the act.

"Our efforts and those of the agencies to meet successfully the requirements of the act are intensifying," Raines said. "I have growing confidence that the initial products of the act will be of significant value."

The hard part for agencies, said Raines, "is pulling a series of statutory mandates into one mission statement. It takes a little bit longer than one would expect."

Stevens is planning a September meeting to discuss agency compliance issues with congressional leaders and OMB.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.