Set-Asides

Agencies not ready for GPRA

When the Government Performance and Results Act goes into effect this fall most agencies will not have completed the analysis required to develop comprehensive strategic plans the General Accounting Office concluded. In a study published last week GAO reported that in only 27 percent of the programs it surveyed had agencies finished with at least one cycle of identifying their goals developing performance measures and gathering and analyzing data. Hardest for most agencies is determining their goals according to the study. Congress will use the plans to decide agency appropriations including how they spend information technology funds.

ABA tracks past performance

The American Bar Association's Public Contracts Law Section wants lawyers contract managers and others to tell it how the government's system for measuring past performance is working. A survey posted on the organization's Web site located at www.abanet.org/contract/pastperf.html asks respondents to rate the quality of vendor past-performance information and suggest how the data should be handled.

The ABA says it will use the results to recommend changes or improvements to agency measurement procedures.

USDA CIO bill introduced

As expected Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) introduced a bill last month that would give Agriculture Department chief information officer Anne Reed authority over the department's $1.2 billion information technology budget.

The bill (S. 805) would give the USDA CIO a sub-Cabinet rank in the department with exclusive authority to approve a transfer or obligation of funds for IT purchases greater than $250 000 or that have a departmentwide impact. The bill would force the department to act as a single organization with respect to IT.

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