Grading implementation of the PMA.
The Five Initatives
Updates on five aspects of the PMA.
Departments report on the PMA.
How They Did It
Stories about achieving breakthrough results in government.
Additional management improvements.
Frequently asked questions about the PMA.
BUDGET AND PERFORMANCE INTEGRATION
"Getting to Green" by Making Performance Count
Every State Fair Midway offers you a chance to throw a softball
into a large bushel basket - without it bouncing out. If
successful, you win a huge Scooby Doo doll or, perhaps, a plastic
light saber. It looks easy in theory, but it is hard in
practice. So it is with budget and performance integration.
How hard can it be to (1) define measurable results, (2) monitor
the progress in achieving those results, and (3) make management
and resource decisions based on such progress? Well . . . pretty
darn hard! Federal agencies have already spent several years
trying to identify and track results under the Government
Performance and Results Act (GPRA or "gip-rah", but never
"jip-rah") and by all accounts the vast majority of this work is
of little value. Often the goals and measures are too process
oriented, too numerous, or describe what "is" not what "should
be." Regardless, the links between the measures and budgets are
often an afterthought. Since the advent of GPRA, agencies have
produced a stack of performance reports over 15 feet high, yet
the information has little or no influence on budget decisions.
It is time to breathe life into the promise of GPRA and, more
importantly, make decisions that will get results for the
"Getting To Green"
"OK," you say, "nice in theory, but what do I have to do?" A
Task Force of agency Chief Financial Officers, led by the
Department of Transportation's Donna McLean, has developed some
helpful concrete guidance called "A Path to Green." It explains
what steps you can take to achieve green on the "status" side of
OMB's scorecard criteria. Other approaches should be vetted with
the appropriate OMB branch to ensure a favorable outcome.
The "PART" And The FY 2004 Budget
In the FY 2004 budget - we are going to begin basing budget
decisions more on program results. Up until now, federal
agencies have never been asked to justify their existence in
terms of getting program performance. Programs that are
"ineffective" will need to be improved or closed out. And, we
are going to challenge programs that are performing well to
do even better.
How do we know if a program is "effective" or "ineffective"?
Most programs do not have adequate measures of performance or
collect the necessary data to determine this. So for the FY 2004
process, approximately one-fifth of all federal programs will
undergo an assessment using a standard set of questions. The
questions comprise the Performance Assessment Rating Tool or
"PART." Agency and OMB staff working together will complete the
PART and the results will help inform the FY 2004 budget
Many federal programs attempt to achieve similar goals. It helps
to be able to compare the results of these programs. Thus, we
are developing common performance measures for several
crosscutting, or common government-wide functions - such as
low-income housing assistance, job training and employment,
wildland fire management, flood mitigation, disaster insurance
Making Performance Count
Dollars should go to programs that work; programs that don't
work should be reformed, constrained, or face closure. The
Administration has started down this road using existing data to
make performance the focus of decision-making. You have the
opportunity to define the measures that will guide your programs
for a long time to come. And your assistance in assessing
programs using the PART and producing common measures will turn
what is currently only easy in theory to something that will be
easy in practice.
The Five Initatives: