OMB, CIOs support a central e-gov fund

OMB, CIOs support a central e-gov fund

The congressional appropriations process is holding back the administration’s 24 e-government projects, Mark Forman and David McClure yesterday told members of the House Government Reform Subcommittee on Technology and Procurement Policy.

Forman, Office of Management and Budget associate director for e-gov and IT, and McClure, director of IT management issues for the General Accounting Office, testified with support from five agency CIOs and one chief operating officer about the need for a governmentwide enterprise architecture.

“All 24 of the initiatives represent multiple-funded projects,” Forman said. “The choice is how many times Congress wants to fund them” at separate agencies. “I believe this is a fundamental issue for e-gov.” He said a central IT fund would save money on redundant programs. The administration requested $45 million for fiscal 2003 as part of a $100 million commitment to e-gov.

McClure said the congressional funding process also presents a barrier to state and local government participation in e-gov, because agencies cannot share money easily among themselves.

Laura Callahan, Labor Department deputy CIO, told the subcommittee that funding incentives for cross-agency collaboration would be beneficial.

“A central fund would help all the initiatives because we could focus on getting the job done instead of worrying about resources,” she said.

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