Rep. Cuellar hopes to influence agency management from appropriations post

Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, said his “over-arching goal on the committee is to create an efficient, effective, and accountable governmen Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, said his “over-arching goal on the committee is to create an efficient, effective, and accountable governmen Charles Dharapak/AP file photo

Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, author of the 2010 Government Performance and Results Modernization Act, plans to use his new post on the powerful House Appropriations Committee to further his long-standing efforts to improve agency efficiency and responsiveness.

“I am confident,” he said in a Monday statement to Government Executive, that GPRA “will give Congress better use of its ‘power of the purse’ to identify and eliminate wasteful spending, while transitioning into a more results-orientated government.”

Under the act, which requires the use of technology and data analytics to track mandatory agency goals, “agency performance reports will undergo reform by eliminating the burdensome, paper-mill reporting," he said. "Agencies will have high priority, cross-cutting, ambitious goals and quarterly reporting that Congress can actively use to make smarter, leaner budgetary decisions.”

He said his “over-arching goal on the committee is to create an efficient, effective, and accountable government to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely and rid our government of ill-informed spending habits.”

When Cuellar was named to the committee in December with a recommendation from the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said he would “bring experience to the committee that controls the purse strings for government departments and agencies.”

Cuellar, who associates himself with the relatively conservative “Blue Dog Democrats,” has applauded the Obama administration’s Campaign to Cut Waste as well as its effort to repeal or revise regulations that are outdated or dubbed overly burdensome for businesses that may be hiring.

“It is essential to lower spending and find savings at the root of government operations, instead of leaving Americans to bear the brunt of cuts in education, Medicare or Social Security,” he said earlier. “I will continue to ensure that before we start cutting vital programs that [Americans] rely on, we streamline and modernize operations in an effort to do more with less.”

A key Cuellar bill, the Government Customer Service Improvement Act, would require the director of the Office of Management and Budget to develop performance measures to determine whether federal agencies are providing high-quality customer service and improving service delivery. It would require agencies to collect feedback from their “customers” on service quality and compel agencies to appoint a customer relations representative to issue guidelines and standards and make the results public.

Though it passed the House in September, a Senate version introduced by Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., died in the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee as the 112th Congress ended.

A Warner spokeswoman on Monday said the senator is working with Cuellar to reintroduce the bill, and the two are also cooperating on oversight of agency compliance with the GRPA Modernization Act.

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:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

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