Regulating for Results

Editor’s Note: The GPRAMA provides the mechanism by which OIRA can leverage OMB’s budget powers to ensure that each agencies regulatory activities are (1) necessary for the agency to achieve its goals and (2) are conducted efficiently and consistent with all requirements.

From: GAO | GAO-16-509

MANAGING FOR RESULTS: OMB Improved Implementation of Cross-Agency Priority Goals, But Could Be More Transparent About Measuring Progress

Many of the results the federal government seeks to achieve require the coordinated effort of more than one federal agency, level of government, or sector. These tasks include protecting the nation’s critical information systems, responding to public health emergencies, ensuring food safety, and better managing the risks of climate change. Effectively managing these government-wide efforts requires coordination between multiple federal agencies and transparent communications to the Congress and decision makers about progress toward achieving results. Further, to ensure that the federal government is achieving its crosscutting goals, both top leaders and agency managers must have accurate and reliable performance information to monitor and track the progress they are making on achieving their goals. The GPRA Modernization Act of 2010 (GPRAMA) established a framework and processes aimed at encouraging a more crosscutting and integrated approach to federal performance, and improving transparency and accountability for these efforts.

Among other things, GPRAMA requires the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to coordinate with agencies to develop federal government priority goals (known as cross-agency priority or CAP goals) —4-year outcome-oriented goals covering a number of crosscutting mission areas—as well as goals to improve management across the federal government.2hese goals are intended to cover areas where increased cross-agency collaboration is needed to improve progress towards shared, complex policy or management objectives, such as attracting foreign investment to spur job growth and enabling agencies to recruit and hire the best talent. GPRAMA requires OMB, in consultation with CAP goal leaders, to publish progress updates quarterly on a public website— is a central government-wide website that provides program and performance information to members and committees of Congress and to the public.

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