Bush budget seeks to cut NASA financial management funding

The Bush administration wants to cut the budget for NASA’s troubled financial management system by 30.8 percent.

The fiscal 2007 budget requests $108.2 million for the Integrated Enterprise Management Program (IEMP), formerly known as the Integrated Financial Management Program, down $48.1 million from last year’s request of $156.3 million.

In October, Government Accountability Office auditors warned that NASA risks inaccurately reporting the cost of its most expensive space missions because the agency has struggled for more than a decade to build a modern financial management system.

The IEMP is supposed to produce meaningful, reliable and timely information to support daily program management and external financial reporting. NASA officials expect to complete the program in fiscal 2008.

Under the new budget, the office of the chief information officer could also see a slight decrease in funding. The president has asked to allocate $7 million less than Congress recently appropriated for fiscal 2006. The president’s request would cut 9 percent off the level approved by Congress, from $76 million for fiscal 2006 to $69 million for fiscal 2007.

The fiscal 2006 CIO office funding will help establish agencywide systems for operations, information technology security and e-government initiatives.

NASA spokeswoman Sonja Alexander stated, “Compared with fiscal year 2006, the lower CIO budget appropriately reflects lower costs as various projects migrate from development to operations, as well as planned efficiencies.”

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