New legislation introduced by Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Gary Peters, D-Mich., and Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., aims to tighten up oversight of Federal agency performance goals, and publish more public data to help track how agencies are performing against stated goals.

The senators said their bill – the Federal Performance Accountability Act of 2022 – would update the 1993 Government Performance and Results Act to require the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) “to regularly conduct strategic reviews of agencies’ performance goals and ensure they are following through with strategic plans.”

OMB already provides regular and extensive policy and performance guidance to Federal agencies – with portions of that guidance typically advanced through the President’s Management Agenda (PMA) and related agency priority goals. The executive branch typically provides periodic updates on how agencies are performing against those goals, and its website features agency-level data that can be used for that purpose.

In addition to requiring additional OMB reviews of goals, the senators said their legislation would “improve the quality and amount of data on”

Text of the Senate bill was not immediately available.

At the top line, the senators said their legislation aims to “improve transparency and accountability on how federal agencies are working to save taxpayer dollars and improve delivery of essential services across the nation.”

“Increasing transparency around how federal agencies are meeting performance goals will help Congress ensure the government is effectively using taxpayer dollars and serving the American people,” Sen. Peters said.

 “This commonsense, bipartisan legislation will provide lawmakers and the Administration with tools and data necessary to measure and evaluate the performance of federal agencies and ensure they are meeting their long-term strategic goals,” he said.

“The federal government should be working effectively for American taxpayers each and every day,” commented Sen. Braun. “I’m proud to join Sen. Peters on this commonsense, bipartisan bill to ensure we improve performance and increase accountability in federal agencies.” 

The legislation also drew a nod from James-Christian Blockwood, Executive Vice President at the Partnership for Public Service, who said, “Federal agencies must have transparent goals and effective strategies for measuring performance to meet the needs of the American public.” 

“The Federal Performance Accountability Act of 2022 will help modernize agencies’ strategic planning processes, reporting frameworks, and performance accountability,” Blockwood said. “The Partnership for Public Service commends this bipartisan action to create an integrated, whole of government approach to improving federal performance and reporting.”

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John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.