|Program Title||Federal Emergency Management Agency: Disaster Response|
|Department Name||Dept of Homeland Security|
|Agency/Bureau Name||Federal Emergency Management Agency|
Direct Federal Program
|Assessment Section Scores||
|Program Funding Level
|Year Began||Improvement Plan||Status||Comments|
Perform an assessment of program using performance data and independent analysis to identify impediments and make aggressive recommendations to improve performance measures and reporting.
|Action taken, but not completed||Currently working with Program Analysis and Evaluation personnel as well as other subject matter experts to coordinate efforts and collect data necessary to improve program performance.|
Review industry standards and best practices to develop quarterly review process of program effectiveness.
|Action taken, but not completed||Coordinating efforts with PA&E and other stakeholders to collect data and monitor resources to ensure program efficiency and that the program is effective and services the needs for which it was developed.|
|Year Began||Improvement Plan||Status||Comments|
Developing baseline information to be used to inform performance measurement.
|Completed||Baseline data for all performance measures established FY 2005.|
Collecting quarterly information and will be able to update the assessment to reflect performance measurement information
|Completed||Performance measurement information is recorded in the Department of Homeland Security's Future Years Homeland Security Program (FYHSP) database which tracks and reports performance data quarterly.|
Measure: Cumulative percentage of emergency teams and operations evaluated through at least one readiness evaluation or exercise (Four Year Cycle).
Explanation:This annual goal tracks with the long-term goal of evaluating 100% of all response teams and operations within four years, and continuing that four year cycle in 2009. In FY08, the measurement calls for a completion of evaluations for all teams. Therefore, in FY09, the four-year evaluation cycle will continue beyond the 100% goal as teams will be reevaluated (hence the total being greater than 100%). In order to achieve the long-term goal for full team readiness, an aggressive evaluation, exercise and assessment schedule must be implemented to measure the capabilities of response teams.
Measure: Average percentage of evaluated teams and operations achieving "fully operational" or better status.
Explanation:This annual goal tracks with the long-term goal of achieving 100% fully operational status for all evaluated response teams by 2010. This measure serves as a counterpart to measure #1. Although it is important to set a goal for the number of teams that are being evaluated, the Response Program has also designed a goal for the number of teams (of the evaluated subset) that are qualified as "fully operational." Fully operational status indicates that teams are meeting all of the prescribed training, equipment, physical and other requirements necessary to perform their missions.
Measure: Average percentage of evaluated teams rising one operational level in a year (considering four operational levels.)
Explanation:This annual goal tracks with the 2010 long-term goal of having 100% of those teams found to be less than "fully operational" improving by one status level in a year. This is a companion measure to the previous two measurements. Considering that there are four established operational levels among response teams (fully operational being the top level), it is important to measure the progress of those teams not at fully operational levels toward achieving that goal. This gives every team a goal of four years to reach this level. This also measures the efficiency and effect of remedial action programs, training, equipment enhancements, exercises and procurements in achieving improvement in overall team performance through established evaluation standards. Because this measurement tracks improvement from previous years' evaluations, it will not be tracked until FY06, in order to capture data from teams that are to be evaluated in FY05.
Measure: Average maximum response time in hours for emergency response teams to arrive on scene.
Explanation:This annual goal tracks with the long-term goal of achieving, by 2009, an average maximum response time of 12 hours for all response teams to arrive on scene. This is a companion measure to the previous three measurements. In order to be truly effective in meeting the needs of communities and disaster victims, team response times must be both ambitious and achievable. This measurement tracks actual team response capabilities and improvements in efficient, timed deployments in relation to transportation improvements, geographic stationing and deployment practices and overall team readiness. A more efficient response time equates to more lives saved, property losses reduced, greater continuity of services and enhanced logistical capability.
Measure: Establishment of FEMA's four Incident Management Teams, now called Federal Initial Response Support Teams (FIRSTs).
Explanation:This annual goal tracks to the long-term goal of establishing four fully functioning IMTs by 2005. Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD) - 5 directs DHS / Response Program to establish IMTs. Response has set a goal of establishing the four IMTs by the end of FY05.
Measure: National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) teams and hospitals trained and exercised in large-scale patient and mass-casualty evacuations.
Explanation:This measurement tracks the percentage of hospitals within the NDMS system that are trained and exercised in patient and mass-casualty evacuations. These hospitals are managed by VA, DOD and other agencies. This measurement is meant to track Response Program management of the overall readiness of the program, as well as that of NDMS partners and signatory agencies.
Measure: Casualty treatment, evacuation and transportation capability of the national NDMS system (number of patients).
Explanation:This annual goal tracks to the long-term goal of achieving a 100,000 patient treatment, evacuation and transportation capability by 2010. This measure serves as a counterpart to measure #6. This measure is meant to track the efficiency of hospitals and NDMS teams, and their increasing ability, through development of standardization and capability, to move and evacuate people during emergencies. Data will be collected from both exercises and actual events.
Measure: Number of highest-risk communities for which catastrophic plans have been completed per year.
Explanation:The Response Program is working towards completing Catastrophic Disaster Plans for a number of the highest-risk communities in the country. The measure is meant to track the completion of catastrophic plans, at a rate of one per year. The outcome of this activity will be increased connectivity among federal, State and local response agencies during events in communities with plans. This added efficiency will in turn lead to more lives saved, property losses reduced, greater continuity of services and enhanced logistical capability.
Measure: Number of evacuees for whom intermediate emergency housing can be provided.
Explanation:This annual goal tracks to the long-term goal of providing housing to a population of 100,000 by 2009. The Response Program is responsible for providing intermediate housing to areas impacted by large disasters. Intermediate housing can be defined as emergency housing for an extended period of time, prior to the establishment of permanent or semi-permanent arrangements for victims. Traditionally, intermediate housing has consisted of travel trailers, campers, modular accomodations or even tents. This measure will track our capability to efficiently deliver intermediate housing units to field operations and service an increasing number of disaster victims in sanitary conditions.
Measure: Average logistical response time in hours to provide essential services to an impacted community of 50,000 people or less.
Explanation:This annual goal tracks to the long-term goal of reducing average logistical response time to 24 hours by 2009. This measure is intended to track the average time it takes Response Logistics Teams to provide essential communication, materiel, medical and other supplies to impacted communities. Faster disaster response will be achieved through efficiencies in the logistical process; and the merging of various systems into one common structure that strategically aligns logistics centers, pre-positioned supplies and enhanced personnel training. This measure is a companion to measure #10, where increased efficiency in response times will permit faster delivery and assembly of housing stock to a larger population. Faster response, more housing capability and better responsiveness will in turn equate to more lives and property saved.
|Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design|
Is the program purpose clear?
Explanation: The DHS and FEMA Strategic Plans both contain language that serve to clearly define the mission, function and purpose of the Response Program. The purpose of the Response Program is clearly stated in the Future Year Homeland Security Program (FYHSP) documentation and planning as an "established, comprehensive Federal response program that quickly, efficiently and effectively provides direct and early support to our Federal response teams as well as State, Tribal and local partners in the event of a natural or manmade major disaster, emergency or terrorist event." The Stafford Act and Homeland Security Act are similarly clear regarding the intent of Congress to establish an effective and cohesive federal response to disasters.
Evidence: DHS Strategic Plan; FEMA Strategic Plan; see also Section 5170b(a)(3) of the Stafford Act; Section 502(3) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 ("The Secretary, acting through the Under Secretary for Emergency Planning and Response, shall . . . provid[e] the Federal Government's response to terrorist attacks and major disasters, including -- . . . coordinating other Federal response resources in the event of a terrorist attack or other major disaster."); GAO-04-72, "SEPTEMBER 11 -- Overview of Federal Disaster Assistance to the New York City Area" (Oct. 2003), at 6-7.
Does the program address a specific and existing problem, interest or need?
Explanation: The federal government has been and is faced with the challenge of implementing various response plans involving many different teams, and the associated need for closer coordination of assets, resources and logistics capabilities to save lives and property in the event of a disaster, whether natural or manmade.
Evidence: Each year, the federal government responds to various natural or manmade disasters, emergencies and fires, as well as potential acts of terrorism. In 2003, for example, more than $1.69 billion in FEMA funds were expended to help people and communities respond to and recover from a variety of natural disasters, including winter storms, floods, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes and tropical storms. According to FEMA data, the expenditures were in response to 56 major disasters and 19 emergencies declared by President Bush, involving 37 states and the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Micronesia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In addition, the agency authorized 48 fire management grants to help fight wildfires in 12 western states and Hawaii. See <www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=10112>.In addition, Section 502(3) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Pub. L. No. 107-296, states that the Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response, is responsible for "providing the Federal Government's reponse to terrorist attacks and other disasters, including -- (A) managing such response; (B) directing the Domestic Emergency Support Team [DEST], the Strategic National Stockpile [SNS], the National Disaster Medical System [NDMS], and . . . the Nuclear Incident Response Team [NIRT]; [and] (D) coordinating other Federal response resources in the event of a terrorist attack or major disaster." See also GAO-01-15, "COMBATING TERRORISM -- FEMA Continues to Make Progress in Coordinating Preparedness and Response" (Mar. 2001), at 10.
Is the program designed so that it is not redundant or duplicative of any other Federal, state, local or private effort?
Explanation: Response becomes involved in events that exceed the response capabilities of State and local governments. There are various specialized capabilities available from among our federal agency and voluntary partners. The Response Program acts as the manager of federal response efforts in order to avoid redundancies in federal response programs. Under the Stafford Act, Homeland Security Act and HSPD-5, Response coordinates many specialized response teams that are both internal and external to DHS. Under FEMA, Response has the capability of assigning missions to, and deploying, various federal assets in the course of disaster response activities, to avoid duplicative response efforts. Moreover, with the implementation of the Federal Response Plan, National Response Plan and National Incident Management System, Response's role is clearly defined as a central point of coordination, direction, command and control.
Evidence: See Section 5170b(a)(3) of the Stafford Act; Section 502(5) and (6) of the Homeland Security Act ("[FEMA Response responsibilities include] building a comprehensive national incident management system with Federal, State, and local government personnel, agencies, and authorities, to respond to . . . attacks and disasters; [and] consolidating existing Federal Government emergency response plans into a single, coordinated national response plan."); HSPD-5 at paragraphs (14)-(16).
Is the program design free of major flaws that would limit the program's effectiveness or efficiency?
Explanation: Response takes an all-hazards approach to readiness for response activities. This approach allows program managers to anticipate and prepare for various types of hazards and response needs. Because every response effort is unique to the situation, geography and population affected, this flexibility allows for a more robust capability and a more efficient approach to response planning. Rather than reinventing response plans for each event, the program is able to utilize standard pre-designed structures such as the National Response Plan and Federal Response Plan. The flexibility and standardization inherent in these established regimes prevent major flaws from occurring in Response efforts. In some cases the Response program may face the legal issue of not being able to fully use its assets due to the lack of a Disaster Declaration under the Stafford Act.
Evidence: See Sections 507(a)(2), (b) of the Homeland Security Act of 2002; the Federal Response Plan at 13 ("The FRP describes the structure for organizing, coordinating, and mobilizing Federal resources to augment State and local response efforts under the Stafford Act and its implementing regulations . . . The FRP may also be used in conjunction with Federal agency emergency operations plans developed under other statutory authorities as well as [MOUs] among various Federal agencies."). See also the FEMA Annual Performance & Accountability Report Fiscal Year 2001 at 34-35.
Is the program effectively targeted, so that resources will reach intended beneficiaries and/or otherwise address the program's purpose directly?
Explanation: The Stafford Act dictates that response efforts be coordinated with the States as they request disaster declarations and services. The Response Program is designed to ensure that State/local resources are not overtaxed following disasters and that a source of funding is available to speed resources, equipment and responders to the scene. Yet, the Response Program is not optimally designed because many of the resources that FEMA has can not be deployed without a Stafford declaration. So, there may be situations in which resources that the government has invested in can not be used. The opposite also occur. Resources may used in support of a community that should not be receiving federal aid. The basic qualification criterion for a disaster declaration ($1.11 of impact per capita) sets a low hurdle, so some localities may receive aid even when it is within their means to respond without assistance.
Evidence: FEMA's IG (I-02-99) reports that "the $1 per capita does not reflect a State's economic health and its ability to raise public revenues to cover the cost of a disaster." FEMA's IG suggests using an alternative indicator, such as 'Total Taxable Resources' ". . .[that] would ensure that States with a weaker fiscal condition are treated fairly while States with a stronger fiscal condition become more accountable for their disaster welfare." The preamble to the Stafford Act, Sec. 101, directs FEMA to encourage ``individuals, States, and local governments to protect themselves by obtaining insurance coverage to supplement or replace governmental assistance.''
|Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design||Score||60%|
|Section 2 - Strategic Planning|
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: Through the FYHSP process, the Response Program has established an overall long-term goal both yearly (through 2010), and quarterly (in the executable year) via milestones. In order to measure the effectiveness of these activities, the Response Program has established eleven comprehensive long-term performance measures that reflect the purpose of the program and measure progress toward the long-term goal of establishing fully operational response teams with established response times and capabilities. Some examples of these measurements are "Number of evacuees for whom intermediate emergency housing can be provided;" "Average logistical response time to provide essential services to an impacted community;" and "Percentage of Disaster Medical Assistant Teams (DMAT) with appropriate WMD capability" (see "Measures" tab for full list).
Evidence: See FYHSP documents and planning
Does the program have ambitious targets and timeframes for its long-term measures?
Explanation: The Response Program measures demonstrate an ambitious reach towards the long-term goal of the Response division. Performance and efficiency are measured by response times (48 hour increase in efficiency) and numbers of people (99,400 increase over five years) served through the effective application of the program. To ensure cohesion and that common management practices are applied to the various response teams and elements among the combined DHS legacy areas, in-place measures for team evaluations, readiness, remedial action and average established response times (60 hour increase in efficiency over five years) are consistent and challenging. Medical readiness is likewise measured through consistent, performance-enhancing benchmarks including "Percentage of NDMS teams and hospitals trained and exercised in large-scale patient and mass-casualty evacuations;" and "Percentage of NDMS teams with full WMD capability."
Evidence: See FYHSP documents and planning as described immediately above; see also various recent FEMA annual performance reports and performance plans (required by the GPRA of 1993) published between 1998 and 2003, all of which contain numerous performance measures and goals by which FEMA measures itself.
Does the program have a limited number of specific annual performance measures that can demonstrate progress toward achieving the program's long-term goals?
Explanation: The Response Program was reconfigured in FY03 due to the dissolution of the Response and Recovery Directorate as part of the formation of, and FEMA's transition into, DHS. Under this process, the program has been redesigned to meet the current mission and needs of DHS for response efforts. Performance goals have been established for each fiscal year through 2010. Because FYHSP planning contains corresponding milestones and activities for each year, goals are clearly linked to performance.
Evidence: See the FYHSP documents and planning for Response as described in Section 2.1 above. See also GAO/RCED-00-210R -- "FEMA's FY 1999 Performance Report and FY 2001 Performance Plan" (explaining how such annual performance reports and plans, which contain stated performance measures and goals, are required by the GPRA of 1993),
Does the program have baselines and ambitious targets for its annual measures?
Explanation: Because the Response Program was reconfigured in FY03 during the formation of DHS and the program's (and FEMA's) incorporation into that new Department, the FY03-04 period has been, of necessity, largely devoted to program assessment, enhancement and redesign. Also, several new program components have come to Response/FEMA/DHS, as operational components, from other agencies; these components include the National Disaster Medical System (NDMS), Domestic Emergency Support Team (DEST) and Nuclear Incident Response Team (NIRT). Therefore, the Response Program's FY03-04 capabilities have been used as the baseline from which all current and future measurements are taken. The targets for annual measures consistently increase in both expectations and accountability, and serve to bring all the combined elements of Response together under the umbrella of common objectives and goals.
Evidence: See FYHSP documents and planning as cited in Section 2.1 above; see also various recent GPRA-required FEMA annual performance reports and plans as described above.
Do all partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) commit to and work toward the annual and/or long-term goals of the program?
Explanation: The Response Program includes all participating partners and teams in achieving established goals and measures. The long-term goals for the program are shared with all partners directly involved in achievement and responsible for milestones. For instance, NDMS teams are required to submit work plans and spending plans based on achievement of milestones, and priorities set by the Under Secretary and Program leadership. The NDMS system is comprised of the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense, which have the primary resposibility for hospital facilities and evacuation capabilities which are being measured under measures 6-8. The State Pre-Positioned Disaster Supplies Program mandates that state partners sign MOUs requiring them to both participate in reporting and comply with response logistics standards of operation. Regional offices' contractors are being held accountable to support Response in meeting deadlines for milestones and yearly measurement goals. Regional response divisions are required to submit work plans and spending plans for funding based upon milestones, goals and meeting measurements for the fiscal year.
Evidence: PPDS MOU example, NDMS partners MOU example, NDMS Administrative Officer's Handbook, NDMS AO Training Materials, NDMS Work Plan Development Guidance, Regional Response Division Work Plan Guidance. See also GAO-01-15 (Mar. 2001)
Are independent 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: The current components of the Response Program have had numerous independent evaluations conducted, which identified problems that are currently being addressed. The DHS IG conducts audits of every major disaster response and publishes findings in regular reports. Likewise, GAO has periodically performed reviews of the Response Program and issued reports. FEMA maintains a standard remedial action program for every disaster operation, where representatives from other agencies, State and local partners who interact with our response operations can provide feedback, through after-action reports, that is used to improve processes and services. State agencies periodically review disaster operations and provide reports on Response Program activities in disaster operations. The Center for Naval Analyses completed a study on the effectiveness and shortfalls of the NDMS system, based on which changes are being implemented. The D'Araujo Report was commissioned by FEMA management in 2002 to evaluate the disaster workforce program, which is currently being enhanced based on those and other comments. Additionally, the NDMS Team Leader and Administrative Officer training and budget preparation relates goals and achievement to work plans and spending plans.
Evidence: IG reports; GAO reports; CNA Report; D'Araujo report, Bland Report
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: The Response Program utilizes the DHS Planning, Programming and Budgeting System whereby all budget requests begin with detailed multiyear planning, the program derives its budget from a number of sources throughout the agency. The link between performance and budget request is not transparent in the budget. Additionally, one of the sources of the Response budget is the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) The DRF request is based on a five year average of disaster costs, not any performance data.
Evidence: FYHSP planning documentation. FY 2004 Budget Request
Has the program taken meaningful steps to correct its strategic planning deficiencies?
Explanation: During the year of execution, Response conducts internal quarterly evaluations of its achievement of milestones and measures, and reports to the Under Secretary on the status of each element, subprogram and priority. Color codes are assigned to performance based on percentages of milestone achievement (i.e., 0-60% completion = red; 60-80% = yellow; and 80-100% = green). Where red elements are reported, a four-part remedial action plan is developed to determine a course of action to correct the deficiencies (both internal and external). The Response Program has only been in existence in its present form for one year. However, at the end of FY03 the FEMA Peformance and Accountability report reflected weaknesses in meeting established measures for logistical response times. Response immediately embarked on a redesign of strategic planning and milestones for the logistics subprogram, and developed clear and achievable milestones to establish a Pre-Positioned Disaster Supplies Program, in order to alleviate this deficiency and meet the established measure for FY04. All of the current eleven performance measures for the Response Program were developed in the last year in order to bring many different components (brought into DHS from multiple agencies) under a single plan. The newly introduced DHS Strategic Plan, President's Management Agenda, Clay Johnson High Level Goals, and other milestones and measures have all been integrated into Response Program planning.
Evidence: Executive Summary of PPDS; Quarterly Review Example; FYHSP planning documentation.
|Section 2 - Strategic Planning||Score||80%|
|Section 3 - Program Management|
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: The Response Program regularly reviews the status of all milestones and priorities on a quarterly basis. This information is collected at the individual employee, team, section, branch and Division level. The data are entered into a project tracking program wherein each element, subprogram and priority is assigned a color code (red, yellow or green) to reflect the percentage of completion thus far for the year. Every milestone is tracked until 100% completion is achieved. If any area is designated as red (60% completion or less), a detailed plan of action is developed to remedy the deficiency. In this way, resources can be redirected to complete priorities and external problems can be identified for remediation. The Domestic Emergency Support Team (DEST) (US Secret Service and other agency partners) and Nuclear Incident Response Team (NIRT) (Department of Energy and other agency partners) elements are two examples of areas where agency partners are required to participate in quarterly progress reviews. A system is being put into place for FY05 to hold NDMS and US&R teams to the same level of reporting and accountability. The Response Program collects timely and credible performance information on the planning and operational objectives of the organization. After every major disaster operation, an after-action report is developed with input from every partner agency involved in the disaster operation. This feedback is collected by the Preparedness Program and is used to provide suggested programmatic enhancements to Response through the Remedial Action Program. The Performance Accountability Report (PAR) is used to document annual progress and to recommend program redirection in areas of deficiency.
Evidence: FYHSP; Response Program Quarterly Performance Tracking; Quarterly Performance Report; Remedial Action Program
Are Federal managers and program partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) held accountable for cost, schedule and performance results?
Explanation: On a quarterly basis, each subprogram is required to report on the status of its appropriated funds. The milestones and priorities laid out at the beginning of the fiscal year are tracked to determine activity, progress and appropriate utilization of funding. Planning and programmatic changes are made throughout the year, based on progress and the efficiency of activities. In some cases, projects are curtailed and discontinued, and funding is reprogrammed to more critical and promising areas, when progress cannot be demonstrated. The milestones and priorities are considered to be workplans for the managers and are part of their regular performance evaluations. This information is reported to the Under Secretary on a quarterly basis, with certain priorities reported to the Secretary and to the President (through the FYHSP and Clay Johnson High Level Goals). Future funding allocations, planning and resources will be determined by performance.
Evidence: FYHSP; Response Program Quarterly Performance Tracking; Quarterly Performance Report; PPBS Training Presentation; NDMS Administrative Officer Handbook; NDMS MOU for partners; PPDS MOU
Are funds (Federal and partners') obligated in a timely manner and spent for the intended purpose?
Explanation: The annual plans for all subprograms contain a detailed schedule of milestones for expenditures, acquisitions and acceptance of goods and services. Long-term projects are planned using quarterly goals to ensure that appropriate timing and procedures are followed for acquisition processes. In the Resource Management subprogram element, goals and milestones are set regarding length of time and percentage of completed financial transactions. Every subprogram plans in order to complete most financial obligations in a responsible manner by the third quarter of the fiscal year. Each quarter, the subprograms report their financial information under the categories of spending plan amount, allocation, commitment, obligation, amount remaining in accounts and percentage remaining. This information is reported to the Under Secretary, CFO and COO to ensure that all funds are being utilized efficiently and appropriately in a timely manner. Partner funding is tracked in the same manner. Money allocated to US&R and NDMS partners is approved by the program and expended if acquisitions and activities are called for in spending plans and considered to be for appropriate uses.
Evidence: FYHSP; Quarterly Performance Report.
Does the program have procedures (e.g. competitive sourcing/cost comparisons, IT improvements, appropriate incentives) to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost effectiveness in program execution?
Explanation: The Response Program is continuously working to identify efficiencies in cases where various components have introduced similar resources into the organization. For example, rather than preserving three separate deployment systems (FEMA, NDMS, US&R), the program has chosen the NDMS system and contracting mechanism to enhance operations for all response teams and cadres. Combining the logistical capabilities, warehouses and systems from all elements into a single system has both identified efficiencies in the supply system, and reduced overhead costs. Following lessons learned from Hurricane Isabel, the logistics branch has developed the Pre-Positioned Disaster Supply Program, which allots logistical resources to States for quick and efficient receipt of supplies during disasters, so as to eliminate ad hoc transportation expenses and permit more flexibility in supply utilization. After-action reports from disasters also serve to identify such efficiencies. Systems are being put into place at this time to strengthen controls on spending and create a unified structure for planning. Prior to FY03, there were no multi-year plans, milestones or long-term goals consistent across the current Response Program elements. The fact that all elements are now united under a common set of goals and vision is evidence of effectiveness in the short-term. Already, each element has shown progress towards meeting common goals that were established in May, 2003.
Evidence: See Remedial Action Management Program (RAMP) reports; Hurricane Isabel-specific RAMP report; Quarterly Performance Report.
Does the program collaborate and coordinate effectively with related programs?
Explanation: The mission of FEMA and the Response Program is that of coordination and management. The Federal Response Plan and new National Response Plan require that disaster response be coordinated through the Emergency Support Team, Regional Operations Centers (10 nationwide), Regional Emergency Response Teams (10), National Emergency Response Teams (3), Incident Management Teams (four to be established in FY05) and other resources managed by FEMA. Mission assignments made by the Response Program to other agencies during disasters target resources to needs identified in State and local areas. Planning and working groups such as the Voluntary Agencies Active in Disasters (VOAD), Emergency Service Function Leader Group (ESFLG), Regional Interagency Steering Committee (RISC (10)), Catastrophic Disaster Response Group (CDRG) and others are utilized to coordinate and plan as partners. The NDMS coordinating group, made up of the Response Program (FEMA/DHS), VA and DOD, sets objectives and assesses progress within, and the milestones for, the NDMS system. This group has primarily coordinated operational planning and is now engaged in finding ways to meet the goals for the program through regular meetings and coordination. NDMS and US&R utilize working groups made up of teams and task forces (partners) to define goals and objectives for their systems.
Evidence: ESFLG documents and meeting minutes; RISC documents and meeting minutes; CDRG documents and meeting minutes; FRP; NRP; NDMS and US&R Working Groups Documentation; NDMS MOU
Does the program use strong financial management practices?
Explanation: The Response Program tracks its financial information through FEMA's Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS). On a regular basis (sometimes daily), the Response Services Branch runs reports for each account to track expenditures, detect problems within the procurement chain and identify resources that can be reprogrammed or reallocated within the Agency. Every transaction is tracked from the original paperwork (Form 40-1) to the final procurement. Each transaction is tracked internally in a Response Program database that links expenditures to subprogram areas and organizational elements. This database is cross-checked with IFMIS to ensure that no human error has occurred between the Financial Management operation and the Response Program. Failsafe points are in place at every step to prevent against erroneous expenditures. The IFMIS system is a standard program for all FEMA programs and has passed audits from GAO. The information in IFMIS is updated with each transaction and is backed up daily.
Evidence: IFMIS Report Example; internal tracking report example; FYHSP Milestones.
Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its management deficiencies?
Explanation: The quarterly reviews are very useful in identifying management deficiencies. Each element is reflected in a report with the appropriate progress color coding. When certain elements are found to be deficient, the program manager requires a four-part explanation including the problems being faced, possible solutions, impacts of failure, and the pros and cons of possible solutions. This process allows employees at every level to offer suggestions for improving performance. This process has been successful in FY04 reviews, as certain initiatives were thereafter discontinued for the year or curtailed. The FY03 PAR identified fundamental flaws in logistical response times during Hurricane Isabel. This review process required managers to be held accountable for the shortfalls in performance, recommend corrective actions and implement changes. The outcome of the FY03 PAR was the creation of the Pre-Positioned Disaster Supply Program, accomplished by reprogramming resources from within the program budget, for more efficient logistical responses in the future.
Evidence: FY03 PAR; PPDS MOU; Quarterly Review Documents; PPBS Training Presentation.
|Section 3 - Program Management||Score||100%|
|Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability|
Has the program demonstrated adequate progress in achieving its long-term performance goals?
Explanation: Upon formation of the Response Program in FY03, long-term performance goals were set and are tracked against corresponding annual performance measures. The overall long-term performance goal for Response is: By FY10, all multi-disciplinary teams in the Response Program will be consistently evaluated to achieve fully operational status and meet established average response times. Milestones have been set for each year (and have been broken into quarterly milestones for execution) and are regularly evaluated for status of completion. The FY04 mid-year review of the Response Program shows substantial and appropriate progress towards achieving the FY04 goals and measures, and that the Program is on track to achieve its overall long-term goal. This review of progress has included agency partners, interagency response teams (DEST, NIRT), regional response partners and state partners (PPDS).
Evidence: FY04 Mid-Year Review Report; FYHSP Documents
Does the program (including program partners) achieve its annual performance goals?
Explanation: The FY04 Mid-Year review shows appropriate achievement of the annual goals for that year. Because planning has been broken into quarterly deliverables, measures can be tracked throughout the year as milestones are being completed.
Evidence: FY04 Mid-Year Review Report; FYHSP Documents; Response Program Quarterly Performance Tracking.
Does the program demonstrate improved efficiencies or cost effectiveness in achieving program goals each year?
Explanation: There have been considerable management changes, such as the consolidation of warehouse facilities, NDMS business practices being reconfigured from HHS standards to DHS systems, and consolidation of all processes under one management structure. Efficiencies are already being achieved in the FY04 Program execution. In FY05, the Response Program will have more data available for comparison to demonstrate cost efficiencies from year to year. The Response Program has only existed for one year in its present configuration under DHS. Therefore, there has not been sufficient time to obtain quantifiable multi-year information. Systems are being put into place at this time to strengthen controls on spending and create a unified structure for planning. Prior to FY03, there were no multi-year plans, milestones or long-term goals consistent across the current Response Program elements. The fact that all elements are now united under a common set of goals and vision is evidence of effectiveness in the short-term. Already, each element has shown progress towards meeting common goals that were established in May, 2003. For example, rather than preserving three separate deployment systems (FEMA, NDMS, US&R), the program has chosen the NDMS system and contracting mechanism to enhance operations for all response teams and cadres. Combining the logistical capabilities, warehouses and systems from all elements into a single system has both identified efficiencies in the supply system, and reduced overhead costs. Following lessons learned from Hurricane Isabel, the logistics branch has developed the Pre-Positioned Disaster Supply Program, which allots logistical resources to States for quick and efficient receipt of supplies during disasters, so as to eliminate ad hoc transportation expenses and permit more flexibility in supply utilization. After-action reports from disasters also serve to identify such efficiencies.
Evidence: FY04 Mid-Year Review Report; FYHSP Documents; Response Program Quarterly Performance Tracking.
Does the performance of this program compare favorably to other programs, including government, private, etc., with similar purpose and goals?
Explanation: There are no other programs of integrated emergency management and coordination that respond to domestic disaster contingencies. Because the Response Program is unique in nature, it cannot be compared to any other programs for performance evaluation. The Response Program is a culmination of specialties that may be present at State, local and voluntary levels in various agencies and levels of performance. It would not be cost-effective or feasible to compare the Program to the universe of response operations that FEMA supplements when called upon. Response becomes involved in those events beyond the capability of State and local governments to handle. The Response Program acts as the manager of response efforts in order to avoid redundancies and overlaps in federal response programs. Under the Stafford Act, Homeland Security Act and HSPD-5, Response coordinates many varying specialized response teams that are both internal and external to DHS.
Evidence: See generally Stafford Act; Homeland Security Act; HSPD-5.
Do independent evaluations of sufficient scope and quality indicate that the program is effective and achieving results?
Explanation: The FEMA/DHS IG, and GAO, have completed reports of elements within the response program with no findings to indicate that the program is ineffective or lacks results. Audits have shown that the program remains effective despite other external problems. The effectiveness of the Response Program is clearly reflected in the GAO report on the federal response to the events of September 11, 2001. Likewise, the IG Semi-Annual report of 2003 did not recognize shortfalls in the effectiveness or results from response program operations. Reports consistently recognize the outcomes of the response program, including teams that respond when called, resources made available for disaster victims and communities, and effective coordination of activities through mission assignments to other agencies for direct response work.
Evidence: IG reports; GAO reports
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