OMB mulling revision of circular A-130

Office of Management and Budget officials are considering whether the document governing agency implementation of the Clinger-Cohen Act of 1996 needs revisions.

"We're looking at that," said Karen Evans, OMB administrator for e-government and information technology.

If OMB officials do decide that the implementation document, circular A-130, needs revising, it wouldn't happen until spring, Evans added. She spoke to reporters Feb. 8 during a briefing on upcoming federal IT efforts.

The CIO Council last month awarded a contract to Booz Allen and Hamilton that includes further study of the issue, said Roy Mabry, co-chairman of the council's Architecture and Infrastructure Committee governance subcommittee.

"It's preparatory work so that, in the event OMB does open it up, we've already thought about it and have some ideas," Mabry said. Whether the council offers those recommendations for the circular's revision to OMB in an official capacity is an open question, Mabry said. "We don't even know if these ideas should go anywhere," he added.

The Booz Allen contract comes months after a CIO Council-sponsored working group last summer examined possible areas where A-130 may need revising. "Our staff analysis has raised several questions," Mabry said.

Among the ideas the group discussed is whether the circular should make explicit the link between the capital planning investment control (CPIC) process and federal enterprise architecture. Capital planning "is new since A-130 was published," Mabry said.

Another idea on the working group's table was whether to offer recommendations on revising the circular's definition of "enterprise architecture" to explicitly designate the federal enterprise architecture as the overarching framework for agency architectures.

The five reference models of the federal enterprise architecture "are not currently built into or sufficiently explained in terms of the A-130," said Mike Tiemann, the enterprise architecture practice manager for AT&T Government Solutions. Tiemann served as an industry advisor on the council's working group.

Analysts from Booz Allen will complete work by August or September, Mabry said.

About the Author

David Perera is a special contributor to Defense Systems.

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