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Detailed Information on the
Treasury Technical Assistance Assessment

Program Code 10000400
Program Title Treasury Technical Assistance
Department Name Department of the Treasury
Agency/Bureau Name Department of the Treasury
Program Type(s) Direct Federal Program
Assessment Year 2003
Assessment Rating Adequate
Assessment Section Scores
Section Score
Program Purpose & Design 100%
Strategic Planning 75%
Program Management 86%
Program Results/Accountability 40%
Program Funding Level
(in millions)
FY2007 $33
FY2008 $24
FY2009 $35

Ongoing Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments
2008

Test evaluation system of performance model by all teams on sample country projects.

Action taken, but not completed
2008

Collect performance data and baseline for new outcome measures.

Action taken, but not completed Two outcome measures were developed and currently, information is being collected to establish the baseline data. One measure is an index for government change and the second is an index for project engagement. Both these will be used as long-term and annual performance measures

Completed Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments
2003

The Administration will continue to work with OTA as they implement PMTS and develop long-term and annual measures and targets across OTA.

Completed The Project Management Tracking System (PMTS) was implemented, and includes teams for relevant financial performance areas and standardized measurable project objectives. OTA merged the PMTS and current monthly reporting system. OTA developed a program performance system model which includes program performance index, key program results areas (KPRA), and financial discipline project performance indicators by KPRA. This model will make program performance relevant and comprehensive.

Program Performance Measures

Term Type  
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Increase in GDP average of 15 representative countries in which OTA operates. Since OTA's long-term goal is to increase GDP, this measures OTA's impact in this area. The target number represents a percentage increase over the baseline.


Explanation:This measure is an average of 15 representative countries in which OTA operates and covers a 3-year period.

Year Target Actual
2001 $19.3 B $19.3 B
2007 $19.6 B
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Increase in Trade/GDP ratio. Since OTA's long-term goal is to increase trade as a percent of GDP, this measures OTA's impact in this area. The target number represents a percentage increase over the baseline.


Explanation:This measure is an average of 15 representative countries in which OTA works and covers a 3-year period.

Year Target Actual
2001 56.59% 56.59%
2007 57.72%
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Increase in annual per capita income


Explanation:This measure is an average of 15 representative countries in which OTA works and covers a 3-year period.

Year Target Actual
2001 $870 $870
2007 $879
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Stabilization of Debt/GDP ratio


Explanation:This measure is an average of 15 representative countries in which OTA operates and covers a 3-year period.

Year Target Actual
2003 56.59% 56.59%
2007 55.46%
Annual Output

Measure: Increase in total number of countries that publish Annual Budget in Brief (Citizen's Guide) each year. Publishing this document is a sign of a transparent budget process, which is one of OTA's short-term goals.


Explanation:This is a measure for the Budget team - Budget transparency processes - for country projects

Year Target Actual
2003 3 3
2004 4 4
2005 5 7
2006 6 8
2007 9
Annual Output

Measure: Increase in number of countries that draft and issue budget instructions


Explanation:This is a measure for Budget Team - Budget formulation processes - for country projects

Year Target Actual
2007 under development

Questions/Answers (Detailed Assessment)

Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design
Number Question Answer Score
1.1

Is the program purpose clear?

Explanation: Treasury's Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) has a clear program purpose, as expressed in its mission statement: The mission of OTA is to promote economic reforms that lead to development and good governance in countries of strategic importance to the United States. OTA Budget, Tax, Debt and Financial Institution advisors assist developing and post-conflict countries in developing economic policies appropriate for democracies and seeks to strengthen the framework for carrying out such policies. OTA's Enforcement activities are directed towards reducing the financial crimes of corruption, money laundering, and the financing of terrorism in order that the benefits of economic reform flow to a country's general population.

Evidence: The Mission Statement has been extensively documented in reports to Congress, Performance Plans and its website www.ustreasury.hu/other/mission .

YES 20%
1.2

Does the program address a specific and existing problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: Economic development and the promotion of good governance in transitioning, developing and post-conflict societies are two the USG's key foreign policy objectives. Some of the major constraints to economic development and good governance are a lack of transparent budget policies, weak tax regimes, weak financial institutions, and a lack of legal regulations that minimize corruption, money laundering and terrorist finance. OTA programs are designed to directly address these problems while promoting USG interests.

Evidence: Authorizing legislation, Appropriations legislation and Annual Performance Plans

YES 20%
1.3

Is the program designed so that it is not redundant or duplicative of any Federal, state, local or private effort?

Explanation: While there are numerous providers of technical assistance (OTA, USAID, International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and other countries' technical assistance arms), OTA is not duplicative of these other efforts because it capitializes on the expertise of the US Treasury Department by focusing on areas in which the USG and Treasury have a specialized expertise and strategic interest in implementing policies that accord with USG policies. OTA programs function as direct Ministry to Ministry exchanges and projects benefit from substantial dialogue with Treasury Policymakers, and from Treasury relationships with counterpart Ministries of Finance. OTA projects are designed to support IFI-sponsored reforsm in countries where both operate. OTA is able to operate in countries without a USAID mission; however, in countries where both are active, there is some overlap with USAID and quite often the two agencies compete with each other for funds, projects and advisors.

Evidence: Conversations with OTA, World Bank and USAID staff; anectodal evidence of OTA results in various countries. Conversations provide anectodal evidence that host countries and Treasury staff value OTA's unique ability to draw upon the offices and expertise of the US Treasury and its representatives in the field.

YES 20%
1.4

Is the program design free of major flaws that would limit the program's effectiveness or efficiency?

Explanation: OTA programs benefit from a strong functional orientation that contributes to the program's efficiency. OTA carries out its projects through five assistance "teams" organized as follows: (1) Budget Administration and Policy; (2) Government Debt Issuance and Management; (3) Financial Institutions Policy and Regulation; (4) Financial Crimes Law Enforcement; and (5) Tax Policy and Administration. This organization increases OTA's ability to design effective assistance programs to help developing countries implement reforms that address problems identified in Q.1.2 and recruit necessary expertise. In addition, while it might be cheaper to use USAID advisors in countries in which USAID is present, OTA's unique placement within the US Treasury allows it to capitalize upon this economic and financial expertise to more efficiently design advisor programs.

Evidence: Conversations with OTA, Treasury department officials and USAID; first-hand observations by examiner.

YES 20%
1.5

Is the program effectively targeted, so program resources reach intended beneficiaries and/or otherwise address the program's purpose directly?

Explanation: OTA projects are designed to impact the budget, tax, financial institutions, and government debt operations in counterpart countries, and OTA works only in countries which have demonstrated a desire to implement necessary reforms. OTA signs Terms of Reference (TORs) with host governments that outline broad benchmarks and goals. However, these TORs do not outline the duties of the host governments. OTA is in the process of implementing a new Project Management Tracking System (PMTS), which through the establishment of long-term and annual performance measures and annual project reviews to measure performance will help to more effectively target resources.

Evidence: OTA Terms of Reference; Implementation Plan for new Project Management Tracking System (PMTS); plans for PMTS Annual Reviews

YES 20%
Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design Score 100%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning
Number Question Answer Score
2.1

Does the program have a limited number of specific long-term performance measures that focus on outcomes and meaningfully reflect the purpose of the program?

Explanation: During the FY 2004 budget preparation process, OMB and OTA agreed to work on implementing new long-term performance measures to guide program management and budgeting and which promote results and accountability. In response to this recommendation for FY 2005, OTA has developed a new Project Management Tracking System (PTMS), which will require that all OTA teams establish annual and long-term performance measures that contribute towards OTA's new overall long-term measures. Goals/Measures: (1) OTA projects aimed at building stable, high-functioning financial systems in host countries; (2) conducting anti-terrorist/corruption interventions in identified countries; and (3) Rebuilding economic institutions in post-conflict societies. The performance for Goal 1 will be measured by: Increase in GDP (over a 3-year trend); Improvement in the GDP/Trade ratio; and Increase in per capita income. The performance for Goal 2 will be measured by: Anti-corruption laws passed and implemented; and number of cases successfully prosecuted. Performance measures for goal 3 are still under development.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; The new PMTS requires all OTA teams to establish long-term goals for Financial Performance Areas (FPAs) associated with the mission of that team. The long-term goals will be supported by long-term and annual objectives that will be tracked throughout the year. PMTS results will be reviewed at mid-year, and at the end of each year to ensure progress on OTA long-term measures. The PMTS will establish country-specific goals and measures during an Initial Assessment, and these goals and measures will be identified in the TOR. At the end of each annual cycle, decisions will be made to continue efforts, to re-structure efforts, or to end OTA efforts. Participation in efforts directed at anti-terrorist/corruption acitivties in in large part determined by an interagency process not always under the control of OTA

YES 12%
2.2

Does the program have ambitious targets and timeframes for its long-term measures?

Explanation: OTA's targest for achievement of Goal 1 are: an increase in GDP over a three year trend; an increase in percent of trade as a share of GDP over a three year period; and a three year trend of growth in per capita income in host countries. Individual increases in these measures will be set by country and tracked by PMTS. Overall program progress will be tracked by and established by an average of countries with OTA projects (see measures tab). The time spent in assistance of a host country is targeted at 3-5 years. Targets and timeframes for Goals 2 and 3 are under development.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; plan for target/timeframe development.

YES 12%
2.3

Does the program have a limited number of specific annual performance measures that demonstrate progress toward achieving the program's long-term measures?

Explanation: In 2.1 above it is noted that OTA is establishing a Project Management Tracking System for use in evaluating project results and to support overall OTA program goals. Each team project will use Financial Performance Areas (FPAs) to identify which results will be measured. Annual, measurable performance measures will be established (two or three) for each FPA identified, and progress toward those measures will be evaluated annually through PMTS on a mid-year and end-of-year basis. New performance measures will be established on an annual basis for each FPA where a continuing need for progress exists. Where objectives have been met for an FPA, a decision to re-structure the project or to conclude the project will be made consistent with achievement of overall OTA program goals. OTA has already established several annual measures for its Budget team, which will pilot the PMTS.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan. Annual measures will be adopted for each team and which support the team's long term measures and OTA's long-term measures.

YES 12%
2.4

Does the program have baselines and ambitious targets and timeframes for its annual measures?

Explanation: The baseline and target for each OTA annual goal will be established for each specific country and each team. Baselines and targets will be established for each annual measure and monitores annually. OTA currently has established targets and baselines for he budget team. These are under development still for the other teams.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan.

YES 12%
2.5

Do all partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, etc.) commit to and work toward the annual and/or long-term goals of the program?

Explanation: OTA projects require coordination among a number of partners or stakeholders. Most projects are initiated in one of three ways: (1) request from a host country government, (2) request from Treasury policy staff, or (3) request from the State Department. Treasury TA engages only where there is a written agreement on mutual goals and objectives. OTA requires that countries receiving assistance and advisors providing assistance sign a TOR before OTA will provide assistance. The TOR lays out broad goals and stipulates that advisors will develop a work plan and report to OTA on progress towards completing the work plan and achieving the goals identified in the TOR. TORs, however, currently do not identify specific performance measures. As part of its PMTS, OTA plans to include performance measures in its future TORs. Assistance after 1 year will be subject to satisfactory review of TORs.

Evidence: Example TORs; 1999 GAO Report; OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan.

YES 12%
2.6

Are independent and quality evaluations of sufficient scope and quality conducted on a regular basis or as needed to support program improvements and evaluate effectiveness and relevance to the problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: At various times, OTA programs have been reviewed by the State Department IG (1994), the Treasury IG (1996) and the GAO (1999). However, no report has focused on the effectiveness of the program or on how well OTA is meeting its mission and/or long-term goals. While OTA projects are subject to review by the US Embassy and the USAID mission in the host country, which suggest changes in the scope of OTA's in-country work, these reviews are not independent.

Evidence: State IG, Treasury IG, and GAO reports.

NO 0%
2.7

Are Budget requests explicitly tied to accomplishment of the annual and long-term performance goals, and are the resource needs presented in a complete and transparent manner in the program's budget?

Explanation: OTA produces a yearly budget plan once they receive their appropriation from Congress. However, it is not clear that this plan is formed by laying out quantifiable, measurable program objectives, the link between the objectives and OTA's annual and long-term goals, and how funding is to be used to achieve these objectives and goals. Furthermore, OTA does not establish links between its budget plan and its GPRA Annual Performance Plans. Without such linkage, it is difficult to analyze the impact of funding, policy, and legislative changes. Finally, annual budget requests are not derived by estimating what is needed to accomplish the annual performance goals. It should be noted that once implemented, the new PMTS will provide strong additional specificity to evaluation of progress toward long and short-term goals.

Evidence: Annaul Performance Plans; Annual Budget Plans; Assessment missions, trip reports, and monthly reviews constitute the basis for evaluation.

NO 0%
2.8

Has the program taken meaningful steps to correct its strategic planning deficiencies?

Explanation: OTA continues to make progress in improving its strategic planning. In response to last year's PART recommendations, OTA is establishing a system for tracking project performance. Under PMTS each counterpart country will be evaluated according to a number of relevant Financial Performance Areas (FPAs). In addition, each project will establish annual objectives that contribute to a team's newly-established annual and long-terms goals and measures. Each team's measures will contribute to OTA's overall long-term performance measures. In addition, OTA has implemented a formalized budget process in relation to the expenditure of funds appropriated by Congress (TIATA). This includes presentation of detailed budgets and project objectives. Budget submissions compete against one another for scarce TIATA funding. OTA worked with an outside software developer to create a financial database, the Budget and Financial Management Information System (BEMIS), which is used to track budgetary allocations for projects and the related obligation and expenditure of funds.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan. OTAs new PMTS will be piloted during FY 2004 by its Budget Team. After that, the system will be applied OTA-wide to all teams. Baseline data for Budget Team projects will be developed in FY 2003. Budget process documents.

YES 12%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning Score 75%
Section 3 - Program Management
Number Question Answer Score
3.1

Does the agency regularly collect timely and credible performance information, including information from key program partners, and use it to manage the program and improve performance?

Explanation: OTA Partners include host countries and advisors. Historically, each OTA advisor filed a regular monthly report on project activities, including progress reaching goals established in the Terms of Refrence (TOR) and significant obstacles to progress. The Monthly Reports were reviewed by the AD responsible for that functional activity. However, OTA plans to eliminate the Monthly Reports and replace them with the PMTS, which will be more useful as a performance measurement tool. Senior Advisors and Regional Advisors will still be required to file trip reports; however, they also will be expected to update the PMTS for the project that they visit. Team leadership, either the AD or Senior Advisor, will make at least an annual visit to each project in order to evaluate its effectiveness and gauge counterpart support. Per question 2.1, the annual PMTS review and trip reports will be used to judge project success. Where modifications and/or restatement of project goals are necessary, these will be done in the context of the annual review contained in the PMTS.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; monthly reports (which will be replaced by PMTS); trip reports; work plans.

YES 14%
3.2

Are Federal managers and program partners (grantees, subgrantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, etc.) held accountable for cost, schedule and performance results?

Explanation: Each functional team within OTA is managed by an Associate Director (AD). Each OTA project has an individual budget that has been agreed between the AD and the Director of OTA. Using the Budget and Financial Information System (BFMIS), AD's can monitor the cost of each of his/her projects, and ADs are responsible for managing their projects within the agreed budget. In almost every case, ADs (or Senior Advisors) negotiate the scope of a project, which is summarized in the written Terms of Reference (TOR). A schedule for project implementation is also agreed at the time of project inception. Advisors are held accountable for individual program performance, based on guidelines agreed to in PSC contracts and TORs. If host country counterparts do not maintain their support for a project, it is frequently restructured or terminated; however, current TORs do not specify duties of the host government and the consequences of failing to meet thesre requirements. The new PMTS will make advisors and host governments even more accountable for program performance by tracking measures and including consequences of not meeting those measues.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; TORs, performance evaluations, project budgets, project implementation guidelines.

YES 14%
3.3

Are all funds (Federal and partners') obligated in a timely manner and spent for the intended purpose?

Explanation: OTA obligates funds 12-18 months after they are made available and has made efforts to not carry over large unobligated balances into the next fiscal year. Some carryover, however, is unavoidable due to two constraints: (1) OTA receives large fund transfers (SEED, FSA) 9-12 months into the fiscal year; and (2) OTA is only able to obligate funding at the beginning or annual renewal of a project. OTA has made significant progress in dealing with a third constraint (a disconnect between when it obligates funds and when Treasury's financial management system records these obligations) by communicating better with Treasury DO and by implementing a new financial management system (BFMIS). In terms of expenditures, OTA carefully segregates funds so they are spent on the intended activity. OTA's financial management system currently is unable to track expenditures according to obligations.

Evidence: SF 133s. Conversations between OMB, OTA and DO financial management personnel. Documents that evidence OTA is working to de-obligate previously obligated but unexpended funds (FY 2003 deobligations equal $1.78 million).

YES 14%
3.4

Does the program have procedures (e.g., competitive sourcing/cost comparisons, IT improvements, approporaite incentives) to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost effectiveness in program execution?

Explanation: OTA needs to develop an efficiency measure (per unit cost of outputs) to compare relative costs. OTA sources its advisors according to "best value for dollar cost" principles. OTA competitively sources its advisors, but education, and relevant experience are the key selection criteria, not advisor compensation nor the cost of supporting an advisor, and his/her family, overseas. OTA does have two options for sourcing logistical support services for its advisors overseas - the State Department ICASS system and Metrica, Inc., a private sector contracting firm. Wherever possible, OTA makes detailed comparisons of the relative cost of providing advisor support and chooses the low cost alternative. Working with the Procurement Services Division (PSD), OTA converted all Personal Services Contracts (PSCs) from annual agreements to 5-year option contracts. This has lowered the administrative costs associated with contract renewals. In FY 2004, OMB and OTA will work on evaluating the 15% flat program administration fee to see if this is appropriate and keeps administrative costs down.

Evidence: Examiner conversation with OTA; OTA Cost Containment Report; OTA Comparative Cost Analysis (between ICASS and Metrica). OTA has done an extensive review of total advisor costs, and several policies were changed to reduce spending. One outcome of this is that OTA no longer ships Advisor personally owned vehicles (POVs) overseas.

NO 0%
3.5

Does the program collaborate and coordinate effectively with related programs?

Explanation: There are numerous providers of technical assistance, and OTA endeavors to design its program in concert with the resources that others are prepared to make available to a given country. Where appropriate, OTA coordinates with USAID. The technical assistance arms of other bi-lateral and multi-lateral donors may also be active in any given country. Where possible, OTA works to coordinate its assistance programs with these donors, including DIFID (UK) GTZ (Germany), PHARE (EU), SIGMA (EU/OECD), and others. In addition, projects are frequently designed to function in the context of IFI-sponsored reform programs, and project objectives are often related to the "Conditionality" provisions of IFI loans. It bears noting, however, that that there is often overlap and competition between OTA and other technical assistance providers, including USAID.

Evidence: TORs: sections that state OTA and host government will coordinate with USAID and other technical assistance providers in country. Technical Assistance Reports: detail cooperation in country.

YES 14%
3.6

Does the program use strong financial management practices?

Explanation: OTA is subject to annual financial audits as part of main Treasury's audits by KPMG. These audits yield positive results and because Treasury Departmental Offices Financial Management Division (FMD) holds OTA funds, this ensures that adequate internal controls are exercised. In addition, OTA has taken a number internal measures to improve its practices. OTA has developed BFMIS and implemented the Travel Manager Plus system to provide internal financial controls. 100% of travel vouchers are subject to in-house audits. In addition, all other spending vouchers are fully audited.

Evidence: Conversations with OTA financial management officer and OTA management; example travel vouchers and contract reconciliation; Treasury Audit Report.

YES 14%
3.7

Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its management deficiencies?

Explanation: OTA has taken strong measures to improve its management practices. The Budget and Financial Management System (BFMIS) was implemented to better control project budgets, obligations, and expenditures. Travel Manager Plus (TMP) was implemented to speed the processing of the 2,000+ travel vouchers that move through OTA. Payroll processing has been improved, although there still needs to be better links between OTA's BFMIS system and the DoA payroll system. An increasing Program Management budget has allowed OTA to add dedicated staff to its personnel, payroll, and logistical support functions allowing increasing specialization and improving efficiency. The new project performance measuring system (PMTS) will provide Program Management Staff with improved tools to evaluate project effectiveness.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; Conversations with OTA staff; New Advisor Handbook.

YES 14%
Section 3 - Program Management Score 86%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability
Number Question Answer Score
4.1

Has the program demonstrated adequate progress in achieving its long-term outcome performance goals?

Explanation: During the FY 2004 budget preparation process, OMB and OTA agreed to work on implementing new long-term performance measures to guide program management and budgeting and which promote results and accountability. At the time, while OTA had a limited number of long-term goals, these were not measurable and did not identify targets towards which to manage OTA resources or a timeframe for completion. For FY 2005, OTA has developed a new Project Management Tracking System (PTMS), which will require that all OTA teams establish long-term and annual performance measures associated with each team's mission and that support OTA's overall performance measures. The PTMS will be piloted first in the Budget Team's project in Azerbaijan. However, since these measures are new, it is not possible to yet measure progress along those goals.

Evidence: OTA's Project Management Tracking System proposal and implemention plan; The new PMTS requires all OTA teams to establish long-term goals for Financial Performance Areas (FPAs) associated with the mission of that team. The long-term goals will be supported by long-term and annual objectives that will be tracked throughout the year. PMTS results will be reviewed at mid-year, and at the end of each year to ensure progress on OTA long-term and annual measures. The PMTS will establish country-specific goals and measures during an Initial Assessment, and these goals and measures (as well as consequences of not meeting these) will be identified in the TOR. At the end of each annual cycle decisions will be made to continue efforts, to re-structure efforts, or to end OTA efforts (where goals have been reached, or where evaluation determines that projects are no longer feasible).

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.2

Does the program (including program partners) achieve its annual performance goals?

Explanation: Because annual measures do not exist for OTA, so it not possible for partners to achieve such goals. However, as noted in Q.2.1 above, OTA is establishing a Project Management Tracking System for use in implementing long-term and annual performance measures and evaluating project results. Each team project in each country (whether it is established on a resident or intermittent basis) will use Financial Performance Areas (FPAs) to identify those specific areas in which measures will be established and results monitored. Annual, measurable objectives will be established (two or three) for each FPA identified, and progress toward those objectives will be evaluated on a mid-year, and end-of-year basis at a minimum. These annual measures will help OTA measure whether it is meeting OTA's overall long-terms goals.

Evidence: Despite the absenece of annual measures, there is evidence that OTA meets its goals. in FY 2003, OTA initiated and concluded 25 resident and intermittent projects; engaged in 31 anti-terrorism/corruption projects; and deployed 20 advisors who accompanied coalition forces into Iraq.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.3

Does the program demonstrate improved efficiencies or cost effectiveness in achieving program performance goals each year?

Explanation: Over the last 6 years, OTA has grown from an organization that conducted 45 country projects to one that conducted 137 projects in FY03. To support this growth, OTA added administrative personnel, and it adopted or developed financial systems (i.e. TMP+, BFMIS) to manage the increasingly diversified sources of funding. All of this has been financed by the consistent 15% OTA charges on the appropriations and transfers that it receives. While OTA has not been able to cut the cost of its advisory projects, it has been able to keep costs relatively constant in a period when the cost of inputs has risen. OTA has absorbed the capital cost of adopting and developing the financial systems necessary to support this program expansion. One major constraint OTA faces to cutting costs is that it is responsible for its own admin expenses, as opposed to having main Treasury fund some or all of these.

Evidence: Over the last 6 years, OTA has charged the same Program Management fee for projects. The is 15% of the gross amount of funds appropriated and transferred. In addition, over the last 6 years, the one year cost of a resident advisor in the CEE has remained constant at $475,000, and the cost of a resident advisor in the FSU has remained $500,000 per year. OTA has offset increasing project costs with efficiencies. For instance, the Budget Team developed a skills bank for resident advisors and has used residents for activities in other countries formerly done by intermittents. In three of its recurring training activities, distance learning delivery has been developed to reach more participants in more countries. OTA has also been able to invest in financial systems that allow it to process an increasing number of TA activities. OTA and OMB will work to reevaluate the 15% administration fee to see if efficiencies can be achieved as OTA's appropriation increases.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.4

Does the performance of this program compare favorably to other programs, including government, private, etc., that have similar purpose and goals?

Explanation: OTA programs are implemented based on decisions of others to fund, or co-fund, OTA projects. These decisions are made by a number of different, independent parties, including the State Department Office of the Coordinator, State/INL, US Embassies, and individual USAID missions. Each of these entities has other options to achieve its assistance goals, including use of accounting firms, consultants, and NGOs. Their continued support confirms that OTA's costs and project performance compares favorably with other assistance providers.

Evidence: Reports by the GAO, State IG, and Treasury IG all indicate that OTA's costs are comparable to other assistance providers. Moreover, as OTA receives its funding from other organizations (i.e. USAID Missions, the State Department Coordinator's Office, and State/INL), OTA competes with other organizations to receive funding. This "market" mechanism ensures that OTA costs remain in line and competitive with other TA providers. PMTS will provide a more precise measure of OTA results relative to baselines to compare with the performance of other program sources that have developed similar data.

YES 20%
4.5

Do independent and quality evaluations of this program indicate that the program is effective and achieving results?

Explanation: No effectiveness evaluations have been conducted of OTA. The last report on this program was done by the GAO in 1999 and identified a number of problems faced by OTA in its operations. There has been no follow-up report by the GAO, but the program has taken steps to address the problems noted in the report. Please note that due to the small size of OTA and the prohibitive cost of evaluations, OTA does not commission independent evaluations of its projects.

Evidence: GAO Report; conversations with OTA.

NO 0%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability Score 40%


Last updated: 09062008.2003SPR