OMB posts agencies' PART assessments

The Office of Management and Budget today released the annual Program Assessment Rating Tool (PART) results for federal agencies. OMB developed PART to have a consistent approach for evaluating agency programs.

Agencies this year added summary and detailed plans of how they plan to fix or mitigate problems in programs on the Government Accountability Office’s High-Risk list, said Robert Shea, associate director for OMB administration and government performance. This provides more transparency and accountability for agency programs, he said.

Agencies have assessed more than 1,000 programs, accounting for 98 percent of the budget and $2.6 trillion. The latest reviews show 80 percent of programs scored are considered “performing” and rated at “effective,” “moderately effective,” or “adequate,” he said. Of the 67 programs reassessed or assessed for the first time this year, 78 percent were rated as performing.

Among the programs rated effectively performing are the Agriculture Department’s Women, Infants and Children supplemental food program; The National Institute of Standards and Technology Laboratories; and Defense Contract Audit Agency. Among those rated as not performing is the Health and Human Services Department’s Social Services Block Grant, according to the assessments. 

For the past seven years, OMB and federal agencies have evaluated how well programs are working and where they fall short, Shea said.

“Each program has a plan to improve its performance with specific actions that are available online," he said. "We have collected over 5,000 performance measures, 4,462 improvement actions, and programs are on a clear path to improving."

Agency managers also are using more realistic measures to provide a more accurate snapshot of the strengths and weaknesses of their programs, Shea said.

The information on the Web site ExpectMore.gov should serve as a baseline and beginning for the next administration as they continue to review the performance of federal programs, he said.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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