Cato Institute on OMB Transparency and the DATA Act

Editor’s Note:  The DATA Act’s exemptions from the Administrative Procedure Act and Paperwork Reduction Act raise grave concerns and questions about the proposed legislation which require thorough review and vetting.  It is not clear how a statute which would deprive the public of the protection of the “good government” laws could possibly be in the public interest.  For OMB’s views on the proposal, please see OIRA Watch here.

From: Cato Institute

 OMB’s Laggard Transparency Record

Posted by Jim Harper

On Monday, I wrote about the rapidly growing movement to replace the Office of Management and Budget with a different coordinator for standardized publication of government spending data. Why? Because the OMB hasn’t been standardizing and publishing data about government spending. That’s why.

Yesterday, Kaitlin Lee posted a three-part indictment of the OMB on the Sunlight Foundation blog, called “OMB’s Commitment to Data Quality: Too Little, Too Late.” Lee is deeply knowledgeable in this area and extraordinarily patient with the data problems the government throws at her. Credit what you read in her blog post.

(See also the Data Transparency Coalition’s rebuttal of OMB controller Danny Werfel, who appears to be guiding the Obama administration toward opposition to spending data transparency.)

The drumbeat for better data is growing louder, it’s pan-ideological, and it’s non-partisan. Will the OMB preempt the DATA Act by moving forward with real data reforms, or will Congress preempt the OMB’s role?

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