oversight

Managing For Results: Using the Results Act to Address Mission Fragmentation and Program Overlap

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1997-08-29.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                  United States General Accounting Office

GAO               Report to Congressional Requesters




August 1997
                  MANAGING FOR
                  RESULTS
                  Using the Results Act
                  to Address Mission
                  Fragmentation and
                  Program Overlap




GAO/AIMD-97-146
      United States
GAO   General Accounting Office
      Washington, D.C. 20548

      Accounting and Information
      Management Division

      B-277592

      August 29, 1997

      The Honorable Richard K. Armey
      Majority Leader
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable John R. Kasich
      Chairman
      Committee on the Budget
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Dan Burton
      Chairman
      Committee on Government Reform and Oversight
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Bob Livingston
      Chairman
      Committee on Appropriations
      House of Representatives

      This letter responds to your request that we describe the challenge of
      multiple and overlapping federal programs within the framework of the
      Government Performance and Results Act of 1993, known as GPRA or the
      Results Act. As the government searches for ways to do more with less,
      mission fragmentation and program overlap have become increasingly
      important issues. The Congress and the administration, as well as GAO,
      have identified the fragmented nature of many federal activities, coupled
      with the need to reduce the deficit, as the basis for a fundamental
      reexamination of federal programs and structures.1

      The Results Act presents a viable means to begin such a reexamination.
      Under the act, agencies are to set strategic and annual goals, measure
      performance, and report on the degree to which goals are met; based on
      the agencies’ plans, the President is required to submit a governmentwide
      performance plan presenting, in conjunction with the annual budget
      submission, a comprehensive picture of government performance. The
      Congress intended for the Results Act to fundamentally shift the focus of

      1
       Federal Government Management: Examining Government Performance as We Near the Next
      Century, Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, House of Representatives, H. Rpt. No. 861,
      104th Cong. 2d Sess. pp. 5-6 (1996); Office of the Vice President, Transforming Organizational
      Structures: Accompanying Report of the National Performance Review, Sept. 1993; and Government
      Restructuring: Identifying Potential Duplication in Federal Missions and Approaches
      (GAO/T-AIMD-95-161, June 7, 1995).



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                   accountability from a preoccupation with staffing and activity levels to a
                   focus on the outcomes of federal programs. This focus should lead to new
                   information on those programs that cut across agency lines but share
                   common goals.

                   As requested, this report summarizes our prior work dealing with mission
                   fragmentation and program overlap and then describes specific ways in
                   which the Results Act can focus attention on these management
                   challenges and help to develop strategies to harmonize federal responses.
                   As agreed with your offices, we did not update issued work for this report,
                   although we did ensure that the work was still relevant and timely.


                   Our work has documented the widespread existence of fragmentation and
Results in Brief   overlap from both the broad perspective of federal missions and from the
                   more specific viewpoint of individual federal programs. Appendix I
                   captures this body of work, which addresses nearly a dozen federal
                   mission areas and over 30 program areas. Our work has shown that as the
                   federal government has responded over time to new needs and problems,
                   many federal agencies have been given responsibilities for addressing the
                   same or similar national issues; but our work also suggests that some
                   issues will necessarily involve more than one federal agency or more than
                   one approach. Taken as a whole, this body of work indicates that
                   fragmentation and overlap will present a particular and persistent
                   challenge to the successful implementation of the Results Act.

                   But at the same time, the Results Act should offer a new and structured
                   framework to address crosscutting issues. Each of its key stages—defining
                   missions and desired outcomes, measuring performance, and using
                   performance information—offers a new opportunity to address
                   fragmentation and overlap. For example, the Results Act is intended to
                   foster a dialogue on strategic goals involving the Congress as well as
                   agency and external stakeholders. This dialogue should help to identify
                   agencies and programs addressing similar missions and associated
                   performance implications. The act’s emphasis on results-based
                   performance measures should lead to more explicit discussions of
                   contributions and accomplishments within crosscutting programs and
                   encourage related programs to develop common performance measures.
                   Finally, if the Results Act is successfully implemented, performance
                   information should become available to clarify the consequences of
                   fragmentation and the implications of alternative policy and service
                   delivery options, which, in turn, can affect future decisions concerning



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                 department and agency missions and the allocation of resources among
                 those missions.

                 Emphasizing missions, goals, and objectives, as envisioned by the Results
                 Act, should facilitate a broader recognition of the nature and extent of
                 fragmentation and overlap. However, past efforts to deal with crosscutting
                 federal activities and recent developments in both the executive branch
                 and the Congress underscore the need for specific institutions and
                 processes to sustain and nurture a focus on these issues.


                 In this report, we use the term “mission fragmentation” to refer to those
Background and   circumstances in which more than one federal agency (or more than one
Methodology      bureau within an agency) is involved in the same broad area of national
                 need. Historically, national need areas have been described by a
                 classification system called budget functions. Developed as a means to
                 classify budgetary resources on a governmentwide basis according to the
                 need addressed, budget functions are, by intention, very broad. Presently,
                 there are 17 national need areas, including such mission areas as
                 international affairs and income security.2 Functional classifications have
                 been used in the federal budget process for many years to serve a variety
                 of purposes; since 1974, the Congress has used these categories as the
                 framework for the concurrent resolution on the budget. Budget functions
                 will also provide the framework for the governmentwide performance plan
                 that is required by the Results Act to be included with the President’s
                 Fiscal Year 1999 Budget submitted in February 1998.

                 Although this type of system can indicate broad categories of
                 fragmentation and overlap, it does not directly address the issue of
                 program duplication. While mission fragmentation and program overlap
                 are relatively straightforward to identify, determining whether overlapping
                 programs are actually duplicative requires an analysis of target
                 populations, specific program goals, and the means used to achieve them.
                 For example, as an indication of duplication within employment training
                 programs, we reported in 1994 on the extent to which 38 separate
                 programs shared common goals, targeted comparable client populations,
                 provided similar services, and used parallel service delivery mechanisms



                 2
                  In addition, there are three other functions—net interest, allowances, and undistributed offsetting
                 receipts—which allow full coverage of federal spending. The function categories, while complete, do
                 have certain limitations as a classification system. For a discussion of this topic, see Budget Issues:
                 Fiscal Year 1996 Agency Spending by Budget Function (GAO/AIMD-97-95, May 13, 1997).



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                   and administrative structures. Thirty of the programs shared
                   characteristics with at least one other program.3

                   To respond to this request, we compiled an inventory of GAO reports and
                   testimonies dealing with mission fragmentation and program overlap. As
                   agreed, we did not update this issued work, but each identified product
                   was reviewed for relevance and currency. Our goal was to capture the
                   breadth of our published work but to include only those products which
                   described or expanded previous discussions of mission fragmentation or
                   program overlaps, “patchworks,” or duplications. Products which were
                   very narrow in scope—for example, dealing with a program coordination
                   question within a single agency—were not included unless they were part
                   of a larger body of work on the specific program area. The abstracts
                   contained in appendix I summarize matters relevant to fragmentation and
                   overlap and do not necessarily reflect the entirety of the product’s
                   message.


                   Whether approached from a governmentwide perspective or on the basis
Mission            of individual programs, our work has documented mission fragmentation
Fragmentation Is   and program overlap. Although this broad and diverse body of
Widespread         work—covering nearly a dozen missions and over 30 programs and
                   involving most departments and agencies—clearly indicates the potential
                   for inefficiency and waste, it also helps to disclose areas where intentional
                   participation by multiple agencies may be a reasonable response to a
                   specific need. In either case, the Result Act, and its emphasis on defining
                   missions and expected outcomes, can provide the environment needed to
                   begin the process of reassessment.

                   In response to requests from the Senate Committee on Governmental
                   Affairs and more recently from House Leadership, we attempted to
                   quantify the question of mission fragmentation by using spending patterns
                   to describe the relationship between federal missions and organizations.4
                   By mapping department and agency spending against the federal mission
                   areas described by budget function classifications, we showed that most
                   federal agencies addressed more than one mission and, conversely, most
                   federal missions were assigned to multiple departments and agencies. In
                   1996, for example, most agencies made obligations to three or more

                   3
                   Multiple Employment Training Programs: Overlap Among Programs Raises Questions About
                   Efficiency (GAO/HEHS-94-193, July 11, 1994).
                   4
                     See Budget Issues: Fiscal Year 1996 Agency Spending by Budget Function (GAO/AIMD-97-95, May 13,
                   1997) and Budget Function Classification: Agency Spending by Subfunction and Object Category,
                   Fiscal Year 1994 (GAO/AIMD-95-116FS, May 10, 1995).



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    budget functions, and six of the budget functions were addressed by six or
    more executive branch departments and major agencies. For example,
    seven major federal organizations made obligations in 1996 to the Natural
    Resources and Environment mission area, and seven to Community and
    Regional Development.5 While the use of broad budget functions as a
    proxy for federal missions cannot yield an exact measure of the extent of
    fragmentation, our analyses served to illustrate the potential scope of the
    issue and indicate areas for further assessment.

    We have also done a large body of work reviewing specific federal
    programs. Again, in program area after program area—from early
    childhood programs to land management and from food safety to
    international trade—the picture remains the same: widespread
    fragmentation and overlap, often involving many federal departments and
    agencies. Such unfocused efforts can waste scarce funds, confuse and
    frustrate program customers, and limit overall program effectiveness.
    Table 1 summarizes the program areas included in appendix I, which
    contains an annotated bibliography of GAO products covering over two
    dozen federal program areas including, for example, the following:

•   We have reported extensively on federal programs seeking to help people
    find productive employment. In 1995, we identified over 160 employment
    training programs scattered across 15 departments and agencies. While
    about 60 percent of the programs were administered by two departments,
    the remainder resided in departments not generally expected to provide
    employment training assistance. Many of the new employment training
    programs had emerged in these latter departments in recent years.6
•   We reported in 1995 that at least 12 federal departments and agencies were
    responsible for hundreds of community development programs that assist
    distressed urban communities and their residents. Historically, there has
    been little coordination among the agencies, imposing an unnecessary
    burden on urban communities seeking assistance. We reported that
    agencies tended not to collaborate with each other for a variety of reasons,
    including concerns about losing control over program resources.7




    5
     GAO/AIMD-97-95, May 13, 1997.
    6
    Multiple Employment Training Programs: Major Overhaul Needed to Create a More Efficient,
    Customer-Driven System (GAO/T-HEHS-95-70, Feb. 6, 1995).
    7
    Community Development: Challenges Face Comprehensive Approaches to Address Needs of
    Distressed Neighborhoods (GAO/T-RCED-95-262, Aug. 3, 1995).



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                                      •   In the emerging area of telemedicine, federal efforts are fragmented within
                                          nine federal departments and agencies.8 As noted in our 1997 report, no
                                          formal mechanism or overall strategy exists to ensure that federal
                                          investments are fully coordinated to serve a common purpose.


Table 1: Missions and Program Areas
Discussed in GAO Products
                                              Agriculture                                    Health
                                                • Food safety                                   • Long-term care
                                              Commerce and housing credit                       • Substance abuse
                                                • Financial institution regulation              • Nuclear health and safety
                                              Community and regional development                • Telemedicine
                                                • Community development                      Income security
                                                • Economic development                          • Child care
                                                • Emergency preparedness                        • Welfare and related programs
                                                • Housing                                       • Youth programs
                                                • Rural development                          International Affairs
                                              Education, training, employment and               • Educational programs
                                                social services                                 • Foreign affairs
                                                • Early childhood programs                      • Trade
                                                • Employment training                        Law enforcement
                                                • Student aid                                   • Border inspections
                                              General science, space, and technology            • Drug control
                                                • High performance computing                    • Investigative authority
                                                • National laboratories                         • Terrorism and drug trafficking
                                                • Research and development facilities        Natural resources and environment
                                                • Small business innovation research            • Federal land management
                                              General government                                • International environmental programs
                                                • Federal statistical agencies                  • Hazardous waste cleanup
                                                                                                • Water quality




                                          8
                                           The involvement of many federal entities is a function of the breadth of activities encompassed by
                                          telemedicine and an example of how federal responses to emerging issues can often lead to
                                          fragmented systems. Depending on how it is defined, telemedicine can involve the use of imaging and
                                          diagnostic equipment to gather data from a patient, computer hardware and software to record data,
                                          communication lines or satellites to send the data from one location to another, and computer
                                          equipment at the receiving end for a physician or specialist to interpret the data. A telemedicine
                                          system could be as simple as a computer hookup to a medical reference source or as advanced as
                                          robotic surgery. See Telemedicine: Federal Strategy Is Needed to Guide Investments
                                          (GAO/NSIAD/HEHS-97-67, Feb. 14, 1997).



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    Notwithstanding the performance problems suggested by this work, a
    common theme emerges—the evident fragmentation and overlap is the
    result of an adaptive and responsive federal government. As new needs
    were identified, the common response has been a proliferation of
    responsibilities and roles to federal departments and agencies, perhaps
    targeted on a newly identified clientele (e.g., at-risk children), or involving
    a new program delivery approach (e.g., credit programs in addition to
    grants), or, in the worst case, merely layered onto existing systems in
    response to programs that have failed or performed poorly.

    However, as noted in a recent House Government Reform and Oversight
    Committee report,9 “a certain amount of redundancy is understandable
    and can be beneficial if it occurs by design as part of a management
    strategy to foster competition, provide better service delivery to customer
    groups, or provide emergency backup.” Several of our products provide
    examples of these types of federal environments.

•   In some situations, redundancy may be seen as inherently necessary due
    to the nature of the federal effort. For example, because of security
    requirements, the Department of Energy’s (DOE) processes for planning,
    funding, and evaluating nuclear weapons development work came to rely
    on competition among multiple weapons laboratories as a means of
    ensuring quality.10
•   In other cases, the involvement of multiple federal agencies may reflect
    the breadth of activities associated with a given federal mission. For
    example, countries formerly part of the Soviet Union have received
    assistance through over 200 federal programs, some as part of a
    multiagency approach established by law in 1992. Assistance provided by
    23 federal departments and agencies has included food aid, private sector
    development, emergency humanitarian assistance, disposition of weapons
    of mass destruction, and democratic reform.11 Similarly, numerous federal
    agencies are involved in providing disaster assistance. The Federal
    Response Plan prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency
    identifies 27 federal agencies as service providers following any type of
    disaster or emergency that requires a federal response.12

    9
     H. Rpt. No. 104-861, p. 6.
    10
     DOE’s National Laboratories: Adopting New Missions and Managing Effectively Pose Significant
    Challenges (GAO/T-RCED-94-113, Feb. 3, 1994).
    11
       Former Soviet Union: Information on U.S. Bilateral Program Funding (GAO/NSIAD-96-37, Dec. 15,
    1995).
    12
     Results Act: Observations on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Draft Strategic Plan
    (GAO/RCED-97-204R, July 22, 1997).



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                       •   In some program areas, inefficiencies may be difficult to address because
                           of other, overriding goals. For example, the decentralized structure of
                           federal statistical agencies has been cited as inefficient and contributing to
                           data quality problems. However, the potential advantages of consolidation
                           must be weighed against other concerns, such as the potential for abuse
                           and breaches of confidentiality that could occur when so much
                           information about individuals and businesses is concentrated in one
                           agency.13

                           Nevertheless, whether seen as the cause of unfocused and confusing
                           program structures or as a necessary consequence of federal approaches
                           in a specific program area, the fragmentation and overlap described by our
                           work inevitably leads to consideration of reorganization and restructuring.
                           In testimony before the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, the
                           Comptroller General noted that experiences in this and foreign countries
                           suggested several basic principles associated with any reorganization
                           assessment.14 The most important lesson gleaned from these experiences
                           was that any reorganization demands a coordinated approach within and
                           across agency lines, focused on specific, identifiable goals. With its
                           emphasis on defining agency missions, goals and objectives, and strategies
                           to achieve those goals and objectives—and its requirement for
                           involvement of the Congress and other agency and external
                           stakeholders—the Results Act provides a statute-based environment to
                           begin such an assessment.


                           The Results Act will present the Congress and the administration with a
Results Act Holds          new opportunity to address mission fragmentation and program overlap.
Potential to Address       As we noted in our recent assessment of the status of Results Act
Mission                    implementation, the act’s emphasis on results implies that federal
                           programs contributing to the same or similar outcomes should be closely
Fragmentation              coordinated, consolidated, or streamlined, as appropriate, to ensure that
                           goals are consistent and that program efforts are mutually reinforcing.15
                           To implement the act, agencies will need to undertake three key steps:
                           define mission and desired outcomes, measure performance, and use
                           performance information. Each of these steps offers opportunities for the



                           13
                             Statistical Agencies: Consolidation and Quality Issues (GAO/T-GGD-97-78, Apr. 9, 1997).
                           14
                             Government Reorganization: Issues and Principles (GAO/T-GGD/AIMD-95-166, May 17, 1995).
                           15
                            The Government Performance and Results Act: 1997 Governmentwide Implementation Will Be
                           Uneven (GAO/GGD-97-109, June 2, 1997).



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                          Congress and the administration to intervene in ways that could address
                          mission fragmentation. For example,

                      •   as missions and desired outcomes are determined, instances of
                          fragmentation and overlap can be identified and appropriate responses
                          can be defined;
                      •   as performance measures are developed, the extent to which agency goals
                          are complementary and the need for common performance measures to
                          allow for cross-agency evaluations can be considered; and
                      •   as continued budget pressures prompt decisionmakers to weigh trade-offs
                          inherent in resource allocation and restructuring decisions, the Results
                          Act can provide the framework to integrate and compare performance of
                          related programs to better inform choices among competing budgetary
                          claims.


Define Missions and       Perhaps the most important element of the Results Act, at least with
Desired Outcomes          respect to the challenge of mission fragmentation and program overlap, is
                          that it creates a framework that enables and expects congressional and
                          other stakeholder consultation in agency strategic planning.16 This should
                          create the environment needed to look across the activities of individual
                          programs within specific agencies and toward the goals and objectives
                          that the federal government is trying to achieve. The consultation process
                          should present an important opportunity for congressional committees
                          and executive branch agencies to mutually address the extent and
                          consequences of fragmented and overlapping agency missions and poorly
                          targeted programs.

                          In many areas, our previous work has shown that emphasizing missions is
                          the best means to cut across organizational boundaries and identify
                          fragmentation. By emphasizing the intended outcomes of related federal
                          programs, our work has identified legislative changes needed to clarify the
                          Congress’ intent and expectations or to address changing conditions that
                          have arisen since initial statutory requirements were established.
                          Examples include the following:

                      •   In the area of rural development, we reported in 1994 that the patchwork
                          of uncoordinated, narrowly focused programs was an inefficient surrogate
                          for a single federal policy. At the time of our review, a federal interagency
                          group had been established to address service delivery problems, but it

                          16
                           Managing for Results: Achieving GPRA’s Objectives Requires Strong Congressional Role
                          (GAO/T-GGD-96-79, Mar. 6, 1996).



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    could take only limited action because it lacked the authority to make
    changes in the programs. We suggested that the Congress consider
    establishing an interagency executive committee with a mandate to report
    on alternatives to the current fragmented environment, including
    establishing measurable program goals.17
•   Following on our work examining federal export promotion programs, the
    Congress tasked an interagency working group, the Trade Promotion
    Coordinating Committee, with establishing governmentwide priorities for
    promotion programs and proposing an annual unified federal budget
    reflecting those priorities. Our work had shown a lack of information on
    what federal export promotion programs were achieving, whether federal
    resources for export promotion were being used as effectively as possible,
    and obstacles to accessing the programs due to the fragmentation of
    needed services among several agencies.18
•   Healthy People 2000 is a national strategy for improving the health of the
    American people. Started in 1979, Healthy People is a series of
    outcome-based public health objectives developed and updated each
    decade by the U.S. Public Health Service in consultation with other federal
    agencies, state governments, and national organizations. Currently, three
    broad goals are supported by 300 objectives that address 22 priority areas.
    Over time, the Congress has required that Healthy People objectives be
    incorporated into other federal programs as a means to ensure that goals
    and objectives are coordinated to meet federal needs.19

    The opportunity for congressional involvement in agency strategic
    planning could present challenges given the complexity of current
    committee jurisdictions. To address this, bipartisan teams in the House of
    Representatives have been established to coordinate and facilitate
    committee consultations with executive branch agencies. We have
    supported and will continue to actively support the House’s departmental
    staff teams as they review and consult on agencies’ draft strategic plans.
    For example, at the request of the Chairmen of the House Committees on
    Government Reform and Oversight, Appropriations, and the Budget, we
    recently developed a set of key questions to be used by the staff teams
    during their reviews. These questions dealt with identifying relationships



    17
       Rural Development: Patchwork of Federal Programs Needs to Be Reappraised (GAO/RCED-94-165,
    July 28, 1994).
    18
       See Export Promotion: Governmentwide Strategy Needed for Federal Programs (GAO/T-GGD-93-7,
    Mar. 15, 1993).
    19
     GAO/GGD-97-109, June 2, 1997, and Public Health: A Health Status Indicator for Targeting Federal
    Aid to States (GAO/HEHS-97-13, Nov. 13, 1996).



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                      among agencies’ strategic plans, determining similar or related efforts
                      across agencies, and noting the extent of interagency coordination.20

                      The apparent challenge of integrating performance expectations for
                      crosscutting programs with congressional oversight processes and
                      executive management structures should also be aided by an additional
                      Results Act requirement: the governmentwide performance plan. The act
                      requires the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to present a
                      governmentwide performance plan, based on agencies’ annual
                      performance plans, with the President’s Budget; the first plan is required
                      to be issued in February 1998 with the fiscal year 1999 budget. The
                      Congress intended that this plan present a “single cohesive picture of the
                      annual performance goals for the fiscal year.”21 While the precise format is
                      left to the discretion of the OMB Director, the plan is expected to be
                      organized around budget functions, thus providing a mission-based,
                      cross-agency perspective. This approach should facilitate identifying
                      crosscutting programs while also supporting integration with the
                      concurrent resolution on the budget—an important congressional
                      oversight tool that also uses budget functions.


Measure Performance   The Results Act requires agencies to develop annual plans with suitable
                      performance measures in order to reinforce the connection between the
                      long-term strategic goals outlined in strategic plans and the day-to-day
                      activities of managers and staff. To the extent that federal efforts are
                      fragmented across agency lines, developing crosscutting performance
                      measures through interagency coordination could ease implementation
                      burdens while strengthening efforts to develop best practices.
                      Complementary and, where appropriate, common performance measures
                      could permit comparisons of related programs’ results and the tools used
                      to achieve those results.

                      Both the need for and the potential benefits arising from efforts to build a
                      crosscutting perspective into outcome-oriented performance
                      measurement development can be drawn from our previous work.
                      However, the persistent theme from this body of work is that although
                      results-based performance information would help federal managers
                      improve their programs, little information is collected.


                      20
                       Agencies’ Strategic Plans Under GPRA: Key Questions to Facilitate Congressional Review
                      (GAO/GGD-10.1.16, May 1997).
                      21
                        Government Performance and Results Act of 1993, S. Rpt. No. 58, 103d Cong. 1st Sess. p. 27 (1993).



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•   Our work on employment training programs found that many federal
    agencies did not know if they were really helping people find jobs. For
    example, in a study of programs targeting the economically disadvantaged,
    we found that most agencies did not collect information on whether
    participants found jobs; or if they did, whether the jobs were related to the
    training provided; and if it was, what wages the participants earned.
    Without this information, program administrators could not determine if
    they were preparing participants for local labor market opportunities,
    whether employment resulted from participation in employment training,
    or if participants would most likely have found the same types of jobs on
    their own.22
•   The challenge of performance measurement development is increased
    when there are multiple nonfederal entities, in addition to multiple federal
    agencies, involved in a program area. For example, our work on
    ecosystem management noted that data needed to test the concept were
    often noncomparable and insufficient and that a governmentwide
    approach would require unparalleled interagency and federal/nonfederal
    coordination.23

    Even where efforts are made to develop common performance
    information across overlapping programs, the information developed can
    still differ from program to program, hampering crosscutting comparisons.
    For example, our 1996 review of three agencies whose programs provide
    economic development assistance found that each cited a “performance
    ratio”—computed as a comparison of total dollars invested in a project to
    the dollars invested by the federal agency—as one measure of how they
    were meeting their goals.24 However, each agency defined total dollars
    invested differently and calculated the ratio for only a portion of its
    programs. While determining the outcomes of economic development
    programs certainly presents significant challenges, the use of different
    methods to calculate apparently similar performance indicators would in
    any case preclude comparison of the programs.

    Our work also suggests that sustained congressional involvement, in some
    cases spanning many years, will be required even where a legislated

    22
     Multiple Employment Training Programs: Basic Program Data Often Missing (GAO/T-HEHS-94-239,
    Sept. 28, 1994) and Multiple Employment Training Programs: Most Federal Agencies Do Not Know If
    Their Programs Are Working Effectively (GAO/HEHS-94-88, Mar. 2, 1994).
    23
     Ecosystem Management: Additional Actions Needed to Adequately Test a Promising Approach
    (GAO/RCED-94-111, Aug. 16, 1994).
    24
     The agencies were the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Economic Development
    Administration, and the Tennessee Valley Authority. See Economic Development: Limited Information
    Exists on the Impact of Assistance Provided by Three Agencies (GAO/RCED-96-103, Apr. 3, 1996).



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coordinating mechanism exists. For example, the Office of National Drug
Control Policy (ONDCP) was established in 1988 after several previous
legislative efforts were unsuccessful in causing development of a
comprehensive national drug strategy. ONDCP is responsible for developing
and coordinating implementation of a drug control strategy among the
now more than 50 federal agencies involved in this program area.
Recently, ONDCP began developing national performance measures to be
collected in addition to individual agency performance data to help
determine whether or how well counternarcotics efforts were contributing
to the goals of the national strategy. Consistent with the intent of the
Results Act, we recommended that ONDCP complete a long-term plan with
meaningful performance measures and multiyear funding needs linked to
the goals and objectives of the strategy. In February 1997, ONDCP proposed
a 10-year strategy and is making progress toward developing performance
targets and measures for each of its goals.25

Lastly, the Congress has a vital role regarding performance measurement
development in addition to its consultative role with respect to agency
strategic plans. This role can be particularly important in areas of
uncoordinated and fragmented missions. For example, assessing the
outcomes of science-related programs can be extremely difficult because a
wide range of factors determine if and how a particular research and
development project will result in commercial or other benefits, and the
challenge of this type of assessment is heightened by the involvement of
multiple federal agencies. Recently, the Research Roundtable, a
consortium of federal research and development agencies, has been
considering the extent to which its member agencies can and should adopt
a common approach to measuring performance. The Roundtable is one of
about 25 interagency groups, many of which were recently formed on an
ad hoc basis to discuss common concerns in crosscutting issues, including
goal setting and performance measurement. The Congress could work
with these types of interagency coordinating groups to ensure that
congressional data needs are met within any common performance
measurement model. Moreover, this consultation will also reinforce earlier
strategic planning consultations intended to clarify and harmonize
missions.26




25
 Drug Control: Reauthorization of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (GAO/T-GGD-97-97,
May 1, 1997).
26
 Managing for Results: Key Steps and Challenges in Implementing GPRA In Science Agencies
(GAO/T-GGD/RCED-96-214, July 10, 1996).



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Use Performance   For the Results Act to achieve its objective of improved federal
Information       performance and accountability, the performance information made
                  available must be used. Of course, different users will have different
                  needs. Agency managers should use performance information to ensure
                  that programs meet intended goals, to assess the efficiency of processes,
                  and to promote continuous improvement. The Congress needs information
                  on whether and in what respect a program is working well to support its
                  oversight of agencies and their appropriations.27 In the specific area of
                  fragmented and overlapping activities, performance information can help
                  identify performance variations and redundancies and can lay the
                  foundation for improved coordination, program consolidations, or the
                  elimination of unneeded programs.

                  However, developing useful performance information in an environment
                  of fragmented missions presents unique demands, partly because of the
                  number of federal decisionmakers involved. For example, federal
                  employment training programs are not only spread across multiple
                  departments and agencies but are also subject to multiple congressional
                  authorization, oversight, and appropriations jurisdictions. In fact, for the
                  major departments and agencies providing employment training programs,
                  seven different appropriations subcommittees currently review and
                  determine funding levels.28

                  Ideally, the consultation requirements associated with strategic plan
                  development can help address these concerns. In particular, the House
                  departmental teams, composed of representatives from relevant House
                  authorizing committees as well as the appropriations, budget, and
                  oversight committees, were specifically established to help coordinate
                  committee consultations and simplify the provision of congressional views
                  on agency strategic plans. These actions should help promote clarity and
                  consistency of congressional information needs, thus setting the stage for
                  subsequent congressional interest in collected performance information.
                  But the performance measurement challenge of fragmented
                  missions—that is, concentrating attention on redundancies or
                  performance differences across agencies, in addition to performance gaps
                  within a single agency—will present unique difficulties for both the
                  executive branch and the Congress.

                  27
                   For a discussion of possible implications of the Results Act on resource allocation processes, see
                  Performance Budgeting: Past Initiatives Offer Insights for GPRA Implementation (GAO/AIMD-97-46,
                  Mar. 27, 1997).
                  28
                   For a discussion of the intersection of federal missions, departments and agencies delivering
                  services, and cognizant appropriations subcommittees, see Budget Account Structure: A Descriptive
                  Overview (GAO/AIMD-95-179, Sept. 18, 1995).



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                           Past efforts to deal with crosscutting federal activities suggest that even
Building a Sustained       within the statutory framework of the Results Act, success will take time
Focus on                   and will require sustained attention in both the executive branch and the
Fragmentation and          Congress. At this very early stage of Results Act implementation, it is clear
                           that much work remains to be done. In June 1997 testimony before a joint
Overlap                    hearing of the Senate Appropriations and Governmental Affairs
                           Committees, the Director of OMB acknowledged, “(A)gencies
                           understandably have first focused on their own programs, and are only
                           beginning to look at enhancing interagency coordination for programs or
                           activities that are crosscutting in nature.”29 Our reviews of draft agency
                           strategic plans, requested by House Leadership to assist the congressional
                           consultation process, confirmed that agencies are only beginning to
                           consider the challenges of fragmentation and overlap.

                       •   Nearly all of the draft plans lacked evidence of interagency coordination,
                           and some of the plans—including those from some agencies that operate
                           complex programs where interagency coordination is clearly
                           required—lacked any discussion of the need to coordinate with other
                           agencies on crosscutting issues. For example, the ability of the
                           Department of Health and Human Services to achieve its goal of
                           self-sufficiency and parental responsibility for welfare recipients is likely
                           to depend on employment, training, and education programs administered
                           by the Departments of Labor and Education; yet, the draft plan makes no
                           mention of the roles of these other agencies.
                       •   Even if an agency’s draft plan recognized the need to coordinate with
                           others, there was generally little information about what strategies would
                           be pursued to address mission fragmentation and program overlap. For
                           example, although the draft plans for the Departments of Justice and
                           Veterans Affairs contained a general goal to improve coordination among
                           agencies involved in related functions, no specific strategies to achieve
                           this goal were discussed.

                           These developments serve to emphasize a fundamental issue: the need for
                           specific institutions and processes to sustain and nurture a focus on
                           mission fragmentation and program overlap. The very nature of this issue
                           presents special challenges for both the executive branch and the
                           Congress.

                           In the executive branch, the sheer number of departments and agencies,
                           many of which are “holding” organizations for widely diverse subordinate

                           29
                            Statement of Franklin D. Raines, Director, Office of Management and Budget, before the Senate
                           Appropriations and Governmental Affairs Committees, June 24, 1997, p. 3.



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    bureaus, administrations, and services, will present a significant
    impediment. The Results Act establishes mechanisms to deal with this
    environment: strategic plans, emphasizing long-term goals and objectives
    in consultation with the Congress and external stakeholders, and the
    governmentwide performance plan, presenting “a single cohesive picture
    of the federal government’s annual performance goals.” However,
    notwithstanding consultation requirements and the iterative nature of
    strategic planning, such plans will likely focus internally, especially if
    there are no persistent, external, cross-agency integrating efforts. The
    recent growth of ad hoc interagency coordinating groups is an
    encouraging development, but sustained impetus from OMB will likely be
    needed to ensure that agency plans address fragmentation concerns. The
    governmentwide performance plan, prepared by OMB based on agency
    performance plans, offers perhaps the best opportunity for continued
    attention to coordination and integration issues within the executive
    branch, but it remains an untested approach whose relationship to the
    Congress, as discussed below, is unclear.

    The departmental staff teams established in the House of Representatives
    have provided a valuable means to coordinate congressional
    consultations, but mission fragmentation and program overlap will
    continue to present challenges to the traditional committee structures and
    processes. Moreover, the governmentwide performance plan raises a
    series of questions for the Congress, including the following:

•   How can the Congress most appropriately respond to the performance
    goals specified in the plan?
•   How can the Congress express its perspectives and priorities on
    governmentwide performance goals, especially with respect to areas of
    fragmentation and overlap?
•   How can the Congress best stimulate development of common
    performance measures within fragmented mission areas and programs,
    especially for those that cut across jurisdictions of specific committees?

    These questions suggest continuing challenges for the Congress as it seeks
    to address crosscutting performance issues in the context of its current
    institutions and processes.


    As agreed with your offices, unless you publicly announce its contents
    earlier, we plan no further distribution of this report until 30 days from the
    date of this letter. At that time, we will send copies to the House Minority



    Page 16                               GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
B-277592




Leader and the Ranking Minority Members of your Committees; the
Chairmen and Ranking Minority Members of the Senate Committee on
Appropriations, Committee on the Budget, and Committee on
Governmental Affairs; and other interested Members of the Congress. We
will also send copies to the Director, Office of Management and Budget,
and will make copies available to others upon request.

The major contributors to this letter were Michael J. Curro, Assistant
Director, and Linda F. Baker, Senior Evaluator. Please contact me at
(202) 512-9573 if you have any questions.




Paul L. Posner
Director, Budget Issues




Page 17                              GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
Appendix I

Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
Mission Fragmentation and Program
Overlap
                     This appendix lists principal GAO products regarding mission
                     fragmentation and program overlap. Included are (1) products that
                     provide general commentary on the subject and related issues;
                     (2) products that pertain to mission fragmentation at a single department
                     or agency; and (3) products that examine fragmentation within a particular
                     mission or program area.


                     Managing for Results: The Statutory Framework for Improving Federal
General Commentary   Management and Effectiveness (GAO/T-GGD/AIMD-97-144, June 24, 1997)

                     Managing for Results: Analytic Challenges in Measuring Performance
                     (GAO/HEHS/GGD-97-138, May 30, 1997)

                     The Government Performance and Results Act: 1997 Governmentwide
                     Implementation Will Be Uneven (GAO/GGD-97-109, June 2, 1997)

                     Budget Issues: Fiscal Year 1996 Spending by Budget Function
                     (GAO/AIMD-97-95, May 13, 1997)

                     Performance Budgeting: Past Initiatives Offer Insights for GPRA
                     Implementation (GAO/AIMD-97-46, Mar. 27, 1997)

                     Measuring Performance: Strengths and Limitations of Research Indicators
                     (GAO/RCED-97-91, Mar. 21, 1997)

                     Managing for Results: Enhancing the Usefulness of GPRA Consultations
                     Between the Executive Branch and Congress (GAO/T-GGD-97-56, Mar. 10,
                     1997)

                     Managing for Results: Using GPRA to Assist Congressional and Executive
                     Branch Decisionmaking (GAO/T-GGD-97-43, Feb. 12, 1997)

                     Managing for Results: Key Steps and Challenges in Implementing GPRA in
                     Science Agencies (GAO/T-GGD/RCED-96-214, July 10, 1996)

                     Executive Guide: Effectively Implementing the Government Performance
                     and Results Act (GAO/GGD-96-118, June 1996)

                     Managing for Results: Achieving GPRA’s Objectives Requires Strong
                     Congressional Role (GAO/T-GGD-96-79, Mar. 6, 1996)




                     Page 18                             GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
                         Appendix I
                         Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                         Mission Fragmentation and Program
                         Overlap




                         Budget Account Structure: A Descriptive Overview (GAO/AIMD-95-179,
                         Sept. 18, 1995)

                         Program Evaluation: Improving the Flow of Information to the Congress
                         (GAO/PEMD-95-1, Jan. 30, 1995)

                         Government Restructuring: Identifying Potential Duplication in Federal
                         Missions and Approaches (GAO/T-AIMD-95-161, June 7, 1995)

                         Program Consolidation: Budgetary Implications and Other Issues
                         (GAO/T-AIMD-95-145, May 23, 1995)

                         Government Reorganization: Issues and Principles (GAO/T-GGD/AIMD-95-166,
                         May 17, 1995)


                         The Department of Housing and Urban Development: Information on Its
Products Pertaining to   Role, Programs, and Issues (GAO/RCED-97-173R, July 21, 1997)
Individual
Departments or           GAO  presented information on the Department of Housing and Urban
                         Development’s (HUD) role, organization, and resources and a description of
Agencies                 its major programs, their condition, and related issues. For example, in
                         addition to HUD, five other federal departments, two independent agencies,
                         and three government-sponsored enterprises—as well as private investors,
                         public housing authorities, and nonprofit groups—contribute to meeting
                         our nation’s housing needs.

                         Housing and Urban Development: Potential Implications of Legislation
                         Proposing to Dismantle HUD (GAO/RCED-97-36, Feb. 21, 1997)

                         GAO  discussed the breadth of HUD’s responsibilities in housing assistance,
                         community development, housing finance, and related regulatory
                         functions in the context of a legislative proposal to dismantle the
                         Department. The report summarized the potential impact of the proposal
                         on HUD’s customers and the capacity of states and other federal agencies
                         to assume functions proposed in the bill. GAO also discussed the evolution
                         of HUD’s missions, noting that when created in 1965, it captured most
                         federal housing and community development functions whose focus was
                         primarily urban; HUD was not given responsibility for certain client-specific
                         programs (e.g., veterans housing), for programs affecting rural areas, or
                         for oversight of tax policies that affect housing or of financial institutions
                         that participate in the nation’s mortgage markets.



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Appendix I
Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
Mission Fragmentation and Program
Overlap




Government Reorganization: Observations on the Department of
Commerce (GAO/T-GGD/RCED/AIMD-95-248, July 25, 1995)

The missions and functions of the Department of Commerce have been
among the most diverse of the cabinet departments, with its components
responsible for such functions as expanding U.S. exports, developing
innovative technologies, gathering and disseminating statistical data,
measuring and fostering economic growth, granting patents and
trademarks, promoting minority entrepreneurship, predicting the weather,
and serving as an environmental steward. GAO noted that developing a
strategic plan will be particularly challenging for Commerce because the
Department does not have exclusive federal responsibility for any of these
themes.

Environmental Protection: Current Environmental Challenges Require
New Approaches (GAO/T-RCED-95-190, May 17, 1995)

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not been able to target its
resources as efficiently as possible to the nation’s highest environmental
priorities because it does not have an overarching legislative mission and
its environmental responsibilities have not been integrated. Over the years,
the Congress has responded to a series of environmental threats with
individual laws that tended to assign pollution control responsibilities
according to environmental medium (such as air or water) and often
prescribed implementing requirements and mandated time frames for their
completion.

Department of Energy: Need to Reevaluate Its Role and Missions
(GAO/T-RCED-95-85, Jan. 18, 1995)

Created to deal with the energy crisis of the 1970s, Department of Energy’s
(DOE) mission and priorities have changed over time, with new missions in
weapons production and now environmental cleanup emerging. This
testimony suggests a set of questions that could be used to clarify DOE’s
mission, a necessary step to addressing its long-standing management
problems.

Department of Education: Opportunities to Realize Savings
(GAO/T-HEHS-95-56, Jan. 18, 1995)

GAOdiscussed (1) a need to reexamine programs previously suggested by
Education for elimination because they duplicated other programs, had



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                                   Appendix I
                                   Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                                   Mission Fragmentation and Program
                                   Overlap




                                   already achieved their purposes, or were more appropriately funded
                                   through nonfederal sources and (2) programs related to employment
                                   training that overlapped with each other and other programs outside
                                   Education.



Products by Mission
or Program Area

Agriculture
Food Safety                        Food Safety: Changes Needed to Minimize Unsafe Chemicals in Food
                                   (GAO/RCED-94-192, Sept. 26, 1994)

                                   GAO  identified fundamental weaknesses in the federal programs that
                                   monitor chemicals in food. Because the problems associated with the
                                   current fragmented federal system cannot be solved by individual
                                   agencies’ efforts, GAO recommended various actions that the Congress
                                   should take, including creating a single agency to carry out a cohesive set
                                   of food safety laws.

                                   Food Safety: A Unified, Risk-Based System Needed to Enhance Food
                                   Safety (GAO/T-RCED-94-71, Nov. 4, 1993)

                                   Efforts made in response to many recommendations to improve food
                                   safety had fallen short because the agencies continued to operate under
                                   different regulatory approaches contained in their basic laws. GAO
                                   suggested that a single food safety agency may be needed to effectively
                                   resolve long-standing problems, deal with emerging food safety issues, and
                                   ensure a safe food supply.


Commerce and Housing
Credit
Financial Institution Regulation   Bank Oversight Structure: U.S. and Foreign Experience May Offer Lessons
                                   for Modernizing U.S. Structure (GAO/GGD-97-23, Nov. 20, 1996)

                                   In response to proposals to consolidate U.S. bank regulatory agencies, GAO
                                   examined how other countries structure and carry out their bank



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Appendix I
Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
Mission Fragmentation and Program
Overlap




regulation and central bank activities. In contrast to foreign systems, the
U.S. bank oversight system was relatively complex, with four different
federal agencies having the same basic oversight responsibilities for those
banks under their respective purview. Prior work showed that these
agencies often differed on how laws should be interpreted, implemented,
and enforced; how banks should be examined; and how to respond to
troubled institutions. GAO also noted that differentiating oversight
responsibilities by type of financial institution can result in overlap and a
lack of accountability.

Financial Market Regulation: Benefits and Risks of Merging SEC and CFTC
(GAO/T-GGD-95-153, May 3, 1995)

GAO commented on legislation which sought to improve the effectiveness
and the efficiency of financial services regulation by merging the
Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading
Commission, the two agencies that regulate U.S. domestic equity and
futures markets. Although a logical step to consider as part of continuing
modernization efforts, the Congress must ultimately decide whether the
potential benefits of a merger outweigh the risks.

Bank Regulation: Consolidation of the Regulatory Agencies
(GAO/T-GGD-94-106, Mar. 4, 1994)

GAO  supported in principle consolidating regulatory activities of the
various agencies involved, endorsing a partial consolidation pending
clarification of the role of the Federal Reserve.

Bank And Thrift Regulation: Concerns About Credit Availability and
Regulatory Burden (GAO/T-GGD-93-10, Mar. 17, 1993)

The current regulatory system of four separate agencies evolved over
decades of legislative efforts to address specific problems, resulting in a
fragmented system that may no longer be capable of handling the
complexities of today’s banking and thrift industries. However, further
analyses of the root causes of regulatory burden would be needed so that
the burden could be eased without adversely affecting safety and
soundness and consumer protection goals.




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                         Appendix I
                         Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                         Mission Fragmentation and Program
                         Overlap




Community and Regional
Development
Community Development    HUD: Inventory of Self-Sufficiency and Economic Opportunity Programs
                         (GAO/RCED-97-191R, July 28, 1997)

                         GAO inventoried and discussed the programmatic and funding linkages
                         among 23 HUD self-sufficiency and economic opportunity programs that
                         target tenants of public and assisted housing or low- and moderate-income
                         residents in certain geographic areas.

                         Community Development: Challenges Face Comprehensive Approaches to
                         Address Needs of Distressed Neighborhoods (GAO/T-RCED-95-262, Aug. 3,
                         1995)

                         The fragmentation of federal programs among at least 12 federal
                         departments and agencies imposes a burden on distressed urban
                         communities seeking assistance. Historically, there has been little
                         coordination among the agencies, which have been protective of their own
                         resources and separate organizational missions.

                         Community Development: Comprehensive Approaches and Local
                         Flexibility Issues (GAO/T-RCED-96-53, Dec. 5, 1995)

                         GAO summarized its work on comprehensive approaches, noting that the
                         many federal programs involved, considered individually, make sense but
                         together often work against their intended purposes.

                         Community Development: Comprehensive Approaches Address Multiple
                         Needs but Are Challenging to Implement (GAO/RCED/HEHS-95-69, Feb. 8, 1995)

                         Comprehensive approaches to helping distressed neighborhoods face
                         many challenges. One such challenge is that community organizations
                         have to piece together a complex web of funding from private and public
                         sources, with coordination among the many federal agencies involved
                         having been limited.

Economic Development     Economic Development: Limited Information Exists on the Impact of
                         Assistance Provided by Three Agencies (GAO/RCED-96-103, Apr. 3, 1996)

                         The limited information available on the impact of economic development
                         assistance provided by three programs—the Appalachian Regional



                         Page 23                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
                         Appendix I
                         Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                         Mission Fragmentation and Program
                         Overlap




                         Commission, the Department of Commerce’s Economic Development
                         Administration, and the Tennessee Valley Authority—did not establish a
                         strong causal linkage between a positive effect and agency assistance. As
                         one measure of how an agency’s programs met their goals, each of the
                         three agencies cited a 3-to-1 “performance ratio,” computed as a
                         comparison of total dollars invested in a project with dollars invested by
                         the agency. However, each agency defined “total dollars” differently and
                         calculated the ratio for only a portion of its programs.

                         Economic Development Programs (GAO/RCED-95-251R, July 28, 1995)

                         This report lists and provides budgetary information on 342 economic
                         development programs described in the 1994 Catalogue of Federal
                         Domestic Assistance.

Emergency Preparedness   Chemical Weapons Stockpile: Changes Needed in the Management of the
                         Emergency Preparedness Program (GAO/NSIAD-97-91, June 11, 1997)

                         GAO  found that efforts to improve management of the chemical stockpile
                         emergency preparedness program have been frustrated by continued
                         disagreement between the Army and the Federal Emergency Management
                         Agency (FEMA) over their roles and responsibilities. Because these
                         disagreements risk the future effectiveness of the program, GAO
                         recommended that the agencies work together to resolve differences or,
                         alternatively, implement congressional direction to eliminate FEMA’s role in
                         the program.

                         Chemical Weapons Stockpile: Emergency Preparedness in Alabama Is
                         Hampered by Management Weaknesses (GAO/NSIAD-96-150, July 23, 1996)

                         The Army’s chemical stockpile emergency preparedness program in
                         Alabama has been hampered by management weaknesses at the federal
                         level and inadequate action by state and local agencies. Management
                         weaknesses at the federal level include fragmented and unclear roles and
                         responsibilities and a lack of teamwork in the budget process. GAO found
                         these weaknesses contribute to time-consuming negotiations and delays in
                         implementing projects critical to emergency preparedness.




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                    Appendix I
                    Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                    Mission Fragmentation and Program
                    Overlap




                    Disaster Management: Improving the Nation’s Response to Catastrophic
                    Disasters (GAO/RCED-93-186, July 23, 1993)

                    Following on two hurricanes in 1992, GAO summarized its analyses,
                    conclusions, and recommendations concerning federal disaster
                    management. GAO concluded that the federal strategy—encompassing 26
                    different agencies—does not promote adequate preparedness when there
                    is advance warning of a disaster.

Housing             Government-Sponsored Enterprises: Advantages and Disadvantages of
                    Creating a Single Housing GSE Regulator (GAO/GGD-97-139, July 9, 1997)

                    GAO reported that our work continued to indicate that the three housing
                    GSE regulators—HUD, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight,
                    and the Federal Housing Finance Board—would be more effective if
                    combined and authorized to oversee both safety and soundness and
                    mission compliance. Although the GSEs operate differently, the risks they
                    manage and their missions are similar. GAO noted that a combined
                    independent regulatory agency should be better positioned to achieve the
                    autonomy and prominence necessary to oversee the large and influential
                    housing GSEs, which include the Federal National Mortgage Association,
                    the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Association, and the Federal Home Loan
                    Bank System.

                    Homeownership: The Federal Housing Administration’s Role in Helping
                    People Obtain Home Mortgages (GAO/RCED-96-123, Aug. 13, 1996)

                    GAO identified several federal agencies and other entities which shared the
                    basic mission of assisting households who may be underserved by the
                    private market; however, none reached as many households as the Federal
                    Housing Administration. Each of the programs differed in several key
                    dimensions, including loan limits, allowable debt-to-income ratios, and the
                    involvement of direct federal funding.

Rural Development   Rural Development: Steps Towards Realizing the Potential of
                    Telecommunications Technologies (GAO/RCED-96-155, June 14, 1996)

                    As of December 1995, at least 28 federal programs administered by 15
                    federal agencies provided funds that were either specifically designated
                    for telecommunications projects in rural areas or could be used for that
                    purpose. Rural development experts and public officials suggested various




                    Page 25                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
                           Appendix I
                           Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                           Mission Fragmentation and Program
                           Overlap




                           needed changes to federal telecommunications programs, including
                           making the multiple programs easier to identify and use.

                           Rural Development: Patchwork of Federal Water and Sewer Programs Is
                           Difficult to Use (GAO/RCED-95-160BR, Apr. 13, 1995)

                           Seventeen programs administered by eight federal agencies are designed
                           specifically for, or may be used by, rural areas to construct or improve
                           water and wastewater facilities. The programs had common objectives but
                           different eligibility criteria. The complexity and number of programs
                           hampered the ability of rural areas to utilize them.

                           Rural Development: Patchwork of Federal Programs Needs to Be
                           Reappraised (GAO/RCED-94-165, July 28, 1994)

                           The web of federal policies, programs, and regulations accompanying
                           federal funding for rural development makes service delivery inefficient,
                           according to local and regional officials. Moreover, the federal interagency
                           group established to address some service delivery problems can take only
                           limited action due to its restricted authority.

                           Rural Development: Federal Programs That Focus on Rural America and
                           Its Economic Development (GAO/RCED-89-56BR, Jan. 19, 1989)

                           Using data from the Bureau of the Census and the Catalog of Federal
                           Domestic Assistance, GAO identified 88 federal rural development
                           programs.


Education, Training,
Employment and Social
Services
Early Childhood Programs   Early Childhood Programs: Multiple Programs and Overlapping Target
                           Groups (GAO/HEHS-95-4FS, Oct. 31, 1994)

                           In fiscal years 1992 and 1993, there were over 90 early childhood programs
                           in 11 federal agencies and 20 offices. This “system” of multiple programs
                           with firm eligibility cutoffs could lead to disruptions in services from even
                           slight changes in a child’s family status. While multiple programs targeted




                           Page 26                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
                      Appendix I
                      Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                      Mission Fragmentation and Program
                      Overlap




                      disadvantaged preschool-aged children, GAO noted that most such children
                      did not participate in any preschool program.

Employment Training   Department of Labor: Challenges in Ensuring Workforce Development and
                      Worker Protection (GAO/T-HEHS-97-85, Mar. 6, 1997)

                      The Department of Labor has taken some action to address fragmentation
                      issues described by GAO, but these actions have not been enough to solve
                      the problems. Passage of recent welfare reform legislation puts even
                      greater demands on an employment training system that appears
                      unprepared to respond.

                      People With Disabilities: Federal Programs Could Work Together More
                      Efficiently to Promote Employment (GAO/HEHS-96-126, Sept. 3, 1996)

                      Federal assistance to people with disabilities is diffuse, involving 130
                      programs in 19 agencies. Often services are not coordinated between
                      programs, and people with disabilities may receive duplicate services or
                      face service gaps.

                      Multiple Teacher Training Programs: Information on Budgets, Services,
                      and Target Groups (GAO/HEHS-95-71FS, Feb. 22, 1995)

                      In fiscal year 1993, at least 86 teacher training programs in 9 federal
                      agencies funded similar types of services.

                      Multiple Employment Training Programs: Information Crosswalk on 163
                      Employment Training Programs (GAO/HEHS-95-85FS, Feb. 14, 1995)

                      GAO  provided a crosswalk between employment training programs and
                      their fiscal year 1995 appropriation, program purposes, authorizing
                      legislation, budget accounts, target groups, and type of assistance
                      provided.

                      Multiple Employment Training Programs: Major Overhaul Needed to
                      Create a More Efficient, Customer-Driven System (GAO/T-HEHS-95-70, Feb. 6,
                      1995)

                      At least 163 programs—administered by 15 federal departments and
                      agencies which received about $20 billion in fiscal year 1995—provide
                      employment training assistance to a wide variety of client groups. The
                      current fragmented system suffers from problems arising from a multitude



                      Page 27                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
Appendix I
Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
Mission Fragmentation and Program
Overlap




of narrowly focused programs that often compete for clients and funds.
Separate administrative structures raise questions about the programs’
efficiency; the system confuses those seeking assistance and frustrates
employers and administrators.

Multiple Employment Training Programs: Basic Program Data Often
Missing (GAO/T-HEHS-94-239, Sept. 28, 1994)

Federal agencies tended to focus their assessment efforts on
inputs—dollars spent and participants served. Only about one-half of the
programs surveyed collected data on what happened to participants after
they received program services, and only about one-quarter collected data
on wages earned.

Multiple Employment Training Programs: Overlap Among Programs Raises
Questions About Efficiency (GAO/HEHS-94-193, July 11, 1994)

Of the 38 programs in GAO’s analysis, 30 were determined to be
overlapping. That is, they shared common goals, had comparable clients,
provided similar services, and used parallel delivery mechanisms and
administrative structures with at least one other program.

Multiple Employment Training Programs: Conflicting Requirements
Underscore Need for Change (GAO/T-HEHS-94-120, Mar. 10, 1994)

Despite decades of efforts to better coordinate employment training
programs, conflicting eligibility requirements and differences in annual
operating cycles hamper the provision of needed services.

Multiple Employment Training Programs: Most Federal Agencies Do Not
Know If Their Programs Are Working Effectively (GAO/HEHS-94-88, Mar. 2,
1994)

Federal agencies closely monitor their expenditure of billions of dollars
for employment training assistance for the economically disadvantaged,
but most agencies do not collect information on participant outcomes or
conduct studies of program effectiveness—both of which are needed to
know how well programs are helping participants enter or reenter the
workforce.




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              Multiple Employment Training Programs: Overlapping Programs Can Add
              Unnecessary Administrative Costs (GAO/HEHS-94-80, Jan. 28, 1994)

              GAO’sreview of nine programs targeting the economically disadvantaged
              showed those programs had similar goals, often served the same
              categories of people, and provided many of the same services using
              separate but parallel delivery structures.

              Multiple Employment Training Programs: Conflicting Requirements
              Hamper Delivery of Services (GAO/HEHS-94-78, Jan. 28, 1994)

              Despite decades of efforts to better coordinate employment training
              programs, conflicting eligibility requirements and differences in annual
              operating cycles are hampering the provision of needed services. For
              example, nine programs targeting the economically disadvantaged use
              several different standards for measuring income level, defining family or
              household, and determining what is included in income; 16 programs that
              target youth have four different operating cycles.

              Multiple Employment Programs: National Employment Training Strategy
              Needed (GAO/T-HRD-93-27, June 18, 1993)

              Federal, state, and local officials have struggled with the problems created
              by a fragmented system of employment training programs, with several
              states launching coordination efforts at the local level. Despite the
              elimination of some programs, the total number has continued to grow.

              Multiple Employment Programs (GAO/HRD-92-39R, July 24, 1992)

              In fiscal year 1991, 14 federal departments or independent agencies
              administered 125 federal employment training programs. Most of the
              programs and the majority of the funding were for programs administered
              by either the Department of Education or the Department of Labor.

Student Aid   Department of Education: Information on Consolidation Opportunities
              and Student Aid (GAO/T-HEHS-95-130, Apr. 6, 1995)

              GAO described efforts by the Department of Education to consolidate its
              programs and noted instances of potential overlap with programs
              administered by other federal agencies.




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                             Overlap




General Science, Space
and Technology
High Performance Computing   High Performance Computing and Communications: New Program
                             Direction Would Benefit From a More Focused Effort (GAO/AIMD-95-6,
                             Nov. 4, 1994)

                             Much valuable research has been accomplished within the context of the
                             High Performance Computing and Communications program, a
                             coordinated effort among nine federal agencies to accelerate the
                             availability and utilization of the next generation of high performance
                             computers and networks. GAO stated that a more focused management
                             approach could better ensure that new program goals regarding the
                             national information infrastructure are met.

National Laboratories        DOE’sNational Laboratories: Adopting New Missions and Managing
                             Effectively Pose Significant Challenges (GAO/T-RCED-94-113, Feb. 3, 1994)

                             GAO  called for DOE to take a more strategic focus to managing and
                             evaluating its laboratories, noting that with the collapse of the Soviet
                             Union, the missions of DOE’s laboratories needed clarification. These
                             labs—originally created to develop nuclear weapons—faced the prospect
                             of limited future funding at the same time they were under pressure to
                             address current national priorities, such as improving economic
                             competitiveness and cleaning up the environment.

Research and Development     Federal R&D Laboratories (GAO/RCED/NSIAD-96-78R, Feb. 29, 1996)
Facilities
                             For fiscal year 1995, 17 federal departments and agencies identified 515
                             federal research and development laboratories, including those operated
                             by contractors. While the Department of Agriculture reported the largest
                             number of laboratories (185), laboratories in the Department of Defense
                             (DOD), DOE, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and the
                             National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) accounted for
                             88 percent of the funding.

Small Business Innovation    Federal Research: Interim Assessment of the Small Business Innovation
Research                     Research and Technology Transfer Programs (GAO/T-RCED-96-93, Mar. 6,
                             1996)

                             GAO found that 11 federal agencies participate in the Small Business
                             Innovation Research (SBIR) program, which requires agencies with



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                               substantial amounts of R&D spending to award a certain number of grants,
                               contracts, or cooperative agreements to small businesses to encourage
                               experimental, developmental, or research work. Each agency manages its
                               own program, but the Small Business Administration issues policy
                               directives and annual reports for the program. GAO identified instances in
                               which companies received funding for the same proposals multiple times
                               before agencies became aware of the duplication.

                               Federal Research: Preliminary Information on the Small Business
                               Technology Transfer Program (GAO/RCED-96-19, Jan. 24, 1996)

                               GAO identified five agencies that participate in the Small Business
                               Technology Transfer (STTR) program, which requires agencies with
                               substantial amounts of R&D spending to award a certain number of grants,
                               contracts, or cooperative agreements to small businesses who agree to
                               collaborate with a nonprofit research institution to encourage
                               experimental, developmental, or research work. The five STTR agencies
                               also participate in the similar SBIR program. GAO concluded that
                               similarities between the two programs raise questions about the need for
                               the STTR program.


General Government
Federal Statistical Agencies   Statistical Agencies: Consolidation and Quality Issues (GAO/T-GGD-97-78,
                               Apr. 9, 1997)

                               Of the 70 federal agencies engaged in statistical activities, 11 are
                               considered the principal statistical agencies, with 2 Commerce
                               agencies—the Bureau of the Census and the Bureau of Economic
                               Analysis—together with the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor
                               Statistics, accounting for about $825 million of a total $1.2 billion in fiscal
                               year 1997. This decentralized system contributes to inefficiency, a lack of
                               national priorities for allocation of resources, a burden on data users and
                               providers, and restrictions on the exchange of data among statistical
                               agencies. Centralization appeared to address these types of problems, but
                               potential disadvantages could include diminished responsiveness to the
                               needs of former parent departments and objections to the concentration
                               of data in a single agency.




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                 Statistical Agencies: A Comparison of U.S. and Canadian Statistical
                 Systems (GAO/GGD-96-142, Aug. 1, 1996)

                 U.S. and Canadian statistical systems are characterized by different
                 organizational approaches and legal frameworks. The U.S. system is highly
                 decentralized; 11 agencies collect, analyze, and produce statistics as their
                 primary mission. A number of laws, policies, or regulations, some of which
                 apply only to a specific agency, govern the collection, use, and
                 confidentiality of statistical information. Each agency has its own separate
                 budget; in some cases, to protect the confidentiality of data providers,
                 laws allow only the agency collecting specific data to have access to them.
                 In Canada, a single agency, operating under a single law, produces and
                 disseminates virtually all broadly used official government statistics.

                 Federal Statistics: Principal Statistical Agencies’ Missions and Funding
                 (GAO/GGD-96-107, July 1, 1996)

                 OMB considers any agency spending at least $500,000 in a fiscal year for
                 statistical activities to be part of the federal statistical system. In fiscal
                 year 1995, 72 agencies met this threshold. Eleven of these agencies collect,
                 analyze, and produce statistics as their primary mission, and these 11
                 agencies received over $1 billion in current appropriations in both fiscal
                 years 1994 and 1995.

Health
Long-Term Care   Long-Term Care: Demography, Dollars, and Dissatisfaction Drive Reform
                 (GAO/T-HEHS-94-140, Apr. 12, 1994)

                 GAO noted that at the core of the considerable dissatisfaction with the
                 long-term care system is a belief that services from a fragmented delivery
                 system are difficult to access.

                 Services for the Elderly: Longstanding Transportation Problems Need
                 More Federal Attention (GAO/HRD-91-117, Aug. 29, 1991)

                 GAO reported that fragmentation of special transportation serving the
                 elderly was a major, long-standing barrier limiting the effectiveness of
                 federal resources. Experts contacted attributed fragmentation to multiple
                 funding sources, differences between social service and transportation
                 providers, and the costs of coordination.




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                  Administration on Aging: More Federal Action Needed to Promote Service
                  Coordination for the Elderly (GAO/HRD-91-45, Apr. 23, 1991)

                  Officials and others contacted agreed that shared responsibility between
                  multiple state and local agencies frequently resulted in fragmented service
                  delivery. The Administration on Aging, this report stated, did not keep
                  pace in the 1980s with growing coordination needs. Improving the
                  efficiency and quality of services through stronger coordination will
                  continue to be important in the 1990s as an aging population increases the
                  demand for home and community-based services.

Substance Abuse   Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention: Multiple Youth Programs Raise
                  Questions of Efficiency and Effectiveness (GAO/T-HEHS-97-166, June 24, 1997)

                  GAO identified 70 programs in 13 federal departments and agencies in
                  1995—in addition to state, county, and local government and private
                  programs—which could be used to provide substance abuse and/or
                  violence prevention services for youths. Previous GAO work raised
                  questions about the efficiency and effectiveness of this overlapping
                  system, which also creates difficulties for those seeking to access the most
                  appropriate services and funding sources. Insufficient information exists
                  on the accomplishments of the federal programs.

                  Substance Abuse and Mental Health: Reauthorization Issues Facing the
                  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
                  (GAO/T-HEHS-97-135, May 22, 1997)

                  GAO noted that given the number of federal agencies with related
                  responsibilities in the area of substance abuse and mental health services,
                  SAMSHA has a particular challenge as well as an opportunity to
                  coordinate activities and promote the development of effective linkages.

                  Drug and Alcohol Abuse: Billions Spent Annually for Treatment and
                  Prevention Activities (GAO/HEHS-97-12, Oct. 8, 1996)

                  Federal funding for substance abuse treatment and prevention increased
                  by $1.6 billion from fiscal years 1990 through 1994. Federal agencies
                  involved also increased from 12 to 16. Three departments accounted for
                  most of the federal funds available for substance abuse treatment and
                  prevention—HHS, Education, and Veterans Affairs.




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                            Drug Use Among Youth: No Simple Answers to Guide Prevention
                            (GAO/HRD-94-24, Dec. 29, 1993)

                            GAO identified 19 federal prevention programs listed in the Catalog of
                            Federal Domestic Assistance devoted exclusively to substance abuse
                            prevention and analyzed these programs in terms of risk factors addressed.

Nuclear Health and Safety   Nuclear Health and Safety: Consensus on Acceptable Radiation Risk to the
                            Public Is Lacking (GAO/RCED-94-190, Sept. 19, 1994)

                            Federal agencies have set different limits on human exposure to radiation,
                            in part because the agencies have not agreed on calculation methods and
                            have different radiation protection strategies. These differences raise
                            questions about the precision, credibility, and overall effectiveness of
                            federal radiation standards and guidelines in protecting public health. GAO
                            also noted that historically, interagency coordination efforts, often
                            prompted by congressional interest and concerns, have been ineffective.

Telemedicine                Telemedicine: Federal Strategy Is Needed to Guide Investments
                            (GAO/NSIAD/HEHS-97-67, Feb. 14, 1997)

                            From fiscal years 1994 to 1996, nine federal departments and independent
                            agencies invested at least $646 million in telemedicine projects, with DOD
                            the largest federal investor. Opportunities to share lessons learned have
                            been lost due to the lack of a governmentwide strategy to ensure that
                            maximum benefits are gained from the numerous federal telemedicine
                            efforts. Efforts of the Joint Working Group on Telemedicine to develop a
                            federal inventory—a critical starting point for coordination—have been
                            hampered by definitional issues and inconsistent data.


Income Security
Child Care                  Child Care: Narrow Subsidy Programs Create Problems for Mothers Trying
                            to Work (GAO/T-HEHS-95-69, Jan. 31, 1995)

                            Although child care subsidies can have a dramatic effect on drawing low
                            income mothers into the workforce, the fragmented nature of child care
                            funding—with entitlements to some client categories, time limits on
                            others, and activity limits on still others—produces unintended gaps in
                            services, which limit the ability of low income families to become
                            self-sufficient.



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Welfare and Related Programs   Welfare Programs: Opportunities to Consolidate and Increase Program
                               Efficiencies (GAO/HEHS-95-139, May 31, 1995)

                               GAO discussed low-income families’ participation in multiple welfare
                               programs; examined program inefficiencies, such as program overlap and
                               fragmentation; and identified issues to consider in deciding whether and to
                               what extent to consolidate welfare programs. Program areas discussed
                               include employment training, food assistance, and early childhood
                               programs. The report observes that little is known about the effectiveness
                               of many welfare programs.

Youth Programs                 At-Risk and Delinquent Youth: Multiple Federal Programs Raise Efficiency
                               Questions (GAO/HEHS-96-34, Mar. 6, 1996)

                               GAO identified 131 federal programs serving at-risk or delinquent youth
                               with total estimated appropriations for fiscal year 1995 of more than
                               $4 billion. Many programs provided multiple services and had multiple
                               target groups, raising questions about the overall efficiency of federal
                               efforts.

                               Multiple Youth Programs (GAO/HEHS-95-60R, Jan. 19, 1995)

                               For fiscal year 1995, eight federal agencies administered at least 46
                               programs earmarked for youth development. This report lists each
                               program, together with one-page overviews of program authority,
                               objectives, and target groups.


International Affairs
Educational Programs           Promoting Democracy: Foreign Affairs and Defense Agencies Funds and
                               Activities—1991 to 1993 (GAO/NSIAD-94-83, Jan. 4, 1994)

                               GAO  developed an inventory of U.S. government-funded programs aimed at
                               democratic development. Because there is no governmentwide democracy
                               program and no common definition of what constitutes such a program,
                               the inventory was based on what agencies considered to be their support
                               of democratic processes.




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                  Exchange Programs: Inventory of International Educational, Cultural, and
                  Training Programs (GAO/NSIAD-93-157BR, June 23, 1993)

                  GAO inventoried 16 federal agencies with about 75 programs funding
                  international educational, cultural, and training exchange programs.

Foreign Affairs   Foreign Affairs: Perspectives on Foreign Affairs Programs and Structures
                  (GAO/NSIAD-97-6, Nov. 8, 1996)

                  This report summarizes the views of participants at a GAO-sponsored 1996
                  conference on foreign affairs issues. Among other issues, participants
                  discussed a need for policymakers to understand how various U.S.
                  agencies are operating overseas and whether coordination mechanisms
                  need to be strengthened.

                  State Department: Options for Addressing Possible Budget Reductions
                  (GAO/NSIAD-96-124, Aug. 29, 1996)

                  Among options to address budget reductions, GAO discussed lessening the
                  degree of overlap within the structure of State’s bureaus and other
                  agencies, noting that some decisions could necessitate an interagency
                  forum or might require legislative approval.

                  Former Soviet Union: Information on U.S. Bilateral Program Funding
                  (GAO/NSIAD-96-37, Dec. 15, 1995)

                  GAO summarized financial information on U.S. bilateral programs seeking
                  to help the newly independent states of the former Soviet Union transition
                  to democratic societies with market economies. From fiscal years 1990
                  through 1994, 23 departments and independent agencies implemented 215
                  programs in the former Soviet Union, with 3 agencies implementing the
                  majority of noncredit programs.

Trade             National Export Strategy (GAO/NSIAD-96-132R, Mar. 26, 1996)

                  The Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee (TPCC) is an interagency
                  coordinating group legislatively mandated to establish governmentwide
                  priorities for federal export promotion activities and propose an annual
                  unified federal budget reflecting those priorities. While TPCC has made
                  efforts to develop interagency performance measures, it has yet to create
                  measures sufficiently refined to influence budget allocation decisions.




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Farm Bill Export Options (GAO/GGD-96-39R, Dec. 15, 1995)

GAO identified options for improving agricultural export assistance
programs within the Department of Agriculture, including improving
coordination among, restructuring, and abolishing some federal export
promotion programs.

Commerce’s Trade Functions (GAO/GGD-95-195R, June 26, 1995)

GAO commented on how federal trade activities might be consolidated if
the Department of Commerce were abolished. Commerce plays a
significant role in several international trade functions, including trade
policy-making and negotiating, export promotion, trade regulation, and
trade data collection and analysis. GAO listed other agencies that are
involved in performing these and other trade functions.

Export Promotion: Initial Assessment of Governmentwide Strategic Plan
(GAO/T-GGD-93-48, Sept. 29, 1993)

TPCC’s initial effort to develop a governmentwide strategic plan for federal
export promotion programs presented a status report on progress to date.
TPCC did not, however, reach consensus on priorities, nor did TPCC create a
unified budget proposal for federal trade promotion programs, as required
under TPCC’s legislative mandate.

Export Promotion: Improving Small Businesses’ Access to Federal
Programs (GAO/T-GGD-93-22, Apr. 28, 1993)

GAO endorsed in principle a network of “one-stop shops” to improve the
service delivery of export promotion programs. Under the current
fragmented system, contacting multiple offices can leave companies
confused as to what services are available and may discourage some from
seeking assistance.

Export Promotion: Governmentwide Strategy Needed for Federal
Programs (GAO/T-GGD-93-7, Mar. 15, 1993)

While significant funds are devoted to export promotion programs, these
are not allocated on the basis of any governmentwide strategy or set of
priorities. Consequently, taxpayers do not have reasonable assurance that
their money is being effectively used to emphasize sectors or programs
with the highest potential return. The Export Enhancement Act of 1992
incorporated GAO’s recommendations for mandating the TPCC to devise a


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                     governmentwide strategic plan and propose an annual unified federal
                     budget for export promotion.

                     Export Promotion: Federal Approach is Fragmented (GAO/T-GGD-92-68,
                     Aug. 10, 1992)

                     In fiscal year 1991, 10 federal agencies offered export promotion
                     programs, which spent about $2.7 billion. This system is characterized by
                     funding imbalances and program inefficiencies. GAO recommended that the
                     Secretary of Commerce, as chair of the TPCC, work with member agencies
                     to develop a strategic plan and ensure that the budget requests for export
                     promotion programs are consistent with priorities.

                     Export Promotion: Overall U.S. Strategy Needed (GAO/T-GGD-92-40, May 20,
                     1992)

                     Ten federal agencies offer export promotion services, in an often
                     inefficient and sometimes confusing manner. This testimony describes
                     specific instances of fragmentation and its consequences to the U.S.
                     business community and taxpayers.

                     Export Promotion: U.S. Programs Lack Coherence (GAO/T-GGD-92-19, Mar. 4,
                     1992)

                     The lack of a governmentwide strategy for a system of export promotion
                     programs implies that much more might be achieved with existing
                     resources if they were allocated according to national priorities and
                     administered by a different agency structure. TPCC has had some modest
                     successes in coordinating federal export promotion efforts, but the
                     government cannot devise a coherent export promotion strategy one
                     agency at a time.


Law Enforcement
Border Inspections   Customs Service and INS: Dual Management Structure for Border
                     Inspections Should Be Ended (GAO/GGD-93-111, June 30, 1993)

                     Long-standing coordination problems between the two agencies
                     responsible for primary inspections at land border points of entry could
                     best be resolved by ending the dual management structure. GAO presented
                     several options for change to prepare the government to meet the broader



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               challenges posed by changing international business competition and
               increasing international migration flows.

Drug Control   Drug Control: Reauthorization of the Office of National Drug Control
               Policy (GAO/T-GGD-97-97, May 1, 1997)

               Given the complexity of issues and the fragmentation of national drug
               control strategy among more than 50 agencies, GAO endorsed the
               continued need for a central planning agency, such as the Office of
               National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), to coordinate the nation’s drug
               control efforts. ONDCP has recently begun a new effort to develop national
               drug control performance measures, relying on working groups consisting
               of representatives from federal drug control agencies and state, local, and
               private organizations. ONDCP and operational agency data should be
               considered together because results achieved by one agency in reducing
               the use of drugs may be offset by less favorable results by another agency.

               Drug Control: Observations on Elements of the Federal Drug Control
               Strategy (GAO/GGD-97-12, Mar. 14, 1997)

               This report provides information on ONDCP’s development of national-level
               measures of drug control performance and assesses the U.S. Coast Guard’s
               performance measures for its antidrug activities in the context of the
               Results Act.

               Drug Control: Long-Standing Problems Hinder U.S. International Efforts
               (GAO/NSIAD-97-75, Feb. 27, 1997)

               GAO  endorsed ONDCP’s efforts to prepare a long-term strategic plan and
               suggested an approach to planning and budgeting for drug control similar
               to that used in DOD.

               Drug Control: Reauthorization of the Office of National Drug Control
               Policy (GAO/T-GGD-94-7, Oct. 5, 1993)

               Given the persistent severity of the drug problem and the large number of
               federal, state, and local agencies working on the problem, GAO saw a
               continuing need for a central planning agency to provide leadership and
               coordination. GAO recommended that the Congress reauthorize ONDCP for
               an additional finite period of time and suggested that ONDCP be directed to
               develop additional performance measures to assess progress in reducing




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drug use and to incorporate the measures into annual national drug
control strategies.

Drug Control: Coordination of Intelligence Activities (GAO/GGD-93-83BR,
Apr. 2, 1993)

GAO described instances of duplication and overlap in the analysis and
reporting of drug intelligence data, listing federal centers involved in these
activities. The report noted that ONDCP, charged with managing the nation’s
war on drugs, establishes priorities and encourages agency cooperation
but does not have the authority to direct agency intelligence activities.

Drug Control: Inadequate Guidance Results in Duplicate Intelligence
Production Efforts (GAO/NSIAD-92-153, Apr. 14, 1992)

GAO cited areas of duplication and overlap and recommended that DOD
develop guidance for DOD organizations involved in antidrug efforts.

Controlling Drug Abuse: A Status Report (GAO/GGD-88-39, Mar. 1, 1988)

GAO provided an overview of the drug problem and the federal response.
The report noted that information about which antidrug programs worked
best was lacking and that fragmented and uncoordinated antidrug policies
and programs remained obstacles to the success of federal efforts.

Federal Drug Interdiction Efforts Need Strong Central Oversight
(GAO/GGD-83-52, June 13, 1983)

At the time of this review, authority and responsibility for federal drug
interdiction efforts were split among three agencies in three executive
departments, each with different programs, goals, and priorities. Very little
information was available that could be used as a basis for evaluating
program results. Legislation passed in 1972 and 1976 recognized that
fragmentation of federal efforts was a problem and required the President
to develop a comprehensive national drug strategy and appoint a drug
abuse policy coordinator. However, existing strategies had not defined
agencies’ roles, and the drug abuse policy coordinator lacked authority to
set priorities in federal drug efforts.




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Investigative Authority          Federal Law Enforcement: Information on Certain Agencies’ Criminal
                                 Investigative Personnel and Salary Costs (GAO/T-GGD-96-38, Nov. 15, 1995)

                                 Federal Law Enforcement: Investigative Authority and Personnel at 13
                                 Agencies (GAO/GGD-96-154, Sept. 30, 1996)

                                 Federal Law Enforcement: Investigative Authority and Personnel at 32
                                 Organizations (GAO/GGD-97-93, July 22, 1997)

                                 In this series, GAO reported on the jurisdictional overlaps among
                                 organizations authorized to investigate suspected criminal violations of
                                 federal law. GAO noted that the growth of federal law enforcement
                                 activities has been evolutionary, with additional organizations established
                                 in response to new laws and expanding jurisdictions. In the September
                                 1996 report, GAO provided information on 13 federal organizations that
                                 employed 700 or more law enforcement investigative personnel; in the
                                 July 1997 report, 32 additional federal organizations, including 20
                                 inspectors general offices, employing more than 25 but less than 700
                                 personnel were profiled. Collectively, these organizations employed
                                 almost 50,000 investigative personnel as of September 30, 1996.

Terrorism and Drug Trafficking   Drug Trafficking: Responsibilities for Developing Narcotics Detection
                                 Technologies (GAO/T-NSIAD-97-192, June 25, 1997)

                                 Four agencies—ONDCP, Customs, DOD, and OMB—are primarily responsible
                                 for coordinating or developing narcotics detection technologies. ONDCP
                                 and Customs have differing views on the need for various detection
                                 technologies—for example, the specific types of technologies needed
                                 along the southwest border. GAO believes these differing views should be
                                 resolved as ONDCP and Customs work with other agencies in preparing a
                                 long-term technology development plan.

                                 Terrorism and Drug Trafficking: Responsibilities for Developing
                                 Explosives and Narcotics Detection Technologies (GAO/NSIAD-97-95, Apr. 15,
                                 1997)

                                 Four agencies—the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the National
                                 Security Council, the Department of Transportation (DOT), and OMB—are
                                 responsible for overseeing or developing explosives detection
                                 technologies, while other agencies—DOD, ONDCP, Customs, and OMB—are
                                 primarily responsible for coordinating or developing narcotics detection
                                 technologies. GAO noted that these agencies have several joint efforts to



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                          strengthen development of explosives and narcotics detection
                          technologies but have not yet agreed to formal understandings on how to
                          establish standards for explosives detection systems, profiling and
                          targeting systems, and the deployment of canine teams at airports. In
                          addition, the agencies have not agreed on how to resolve issues related to
                          a joint-use strategy and liability. Joint technology development is
                          important because similar technologies are used to detect explosives and
                          narcotics. GAO recommended that the Secretaries of Transportation and
                          the Treasury establish a memorandum of understanding on how FAA,
                          Customs, the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Administration, and other
                          agencies are to work together to address issues surrounding the
                          development of these technologies. GAO also suggested that the Congress
                          consider directing the Secretaries of Transportation and the Treasury to
                          provide an annual report on all the government’s efforts to develop and
                          field explosives and narcotics detection technology.


Natural Resources and
Environment
Federal Land Management   Land Management Agencies: Major Activities at Selected Units are Not
                          Common Across Agencies (GAO/RCED-97-141, June 26, 1997)

                          At six land management agencies, little commonality existed among the 31
                          different mission-related activities—including cultural and natural
                          resource management, habitat conservation, and rangeland
                          management—identified by GAO. Visitor services, maintenance, and
                          construction were the most common major activities, being performed at
                          units of three or more of the six agencies, but most agency resources were
                          devoted to unique activities related to their specific missions.

                          Forest Service Decision-making: A Framework for Improving Performance
                          (GAO/RCED-97-71, Apr. 29, 1997)

                          In this report examining the Forest Service’s decision-making process, GAO
                          discussed a variety of internal and external causes of inefficiency and
                          ineffectiveness, including unresolved interagency issues. For example,
                          although authorized to plan along administrative boundaries, such as
                          those defining natural forests and parks, the agencies are required to
                          analyze environmental concerns along the boundaries of natural systems,
                          which can lead to duplicative environmental analyses, increased costs, and
                          less effective land management decision-making. GAO also noted that land



                          Page 42                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
Appendix I
Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
Mission Fragmentation and Program
Overlap




management and regulatory agencies do not work together to address
issues that transcend their boundaries and jurisdictions and that
environmental and socioeconomic data gathered by the agencies are often
not comparable and have large gaps.

Federal Land Management: Streamlining and Reorganization Issues
(GAO/T-RCED-96-209, June 27, 1996)

GAO’s work at four land management agencies—the National Park Service,
the Bureau of Land Management, and the Fish and Wildlife Service within
the Department of the Interior, and the Forest Service within the
Department of Agriculture—indicated that streamlining the existing
structure and reorganizing it are not mutually exclusive. However, such
efforts will require a coordinated approach within and across agency lines
to avoid creating unintended consequences for the future.

Ecosystem Management: Additional Actions Needed to Adequately Test a
Promising Approach (GAO/RCED-94-111, Aug. 16, 1994)

GAO  described barriers to the planned governmentwide ecosystem
management concept, including the fact that data needed for ecosystem
management, which are collected independently by various agencies for
different purposes, are often not comparable and insufficient. A
governmentwide approach to ecosystem management would require
unparalleled coordination among federal agencies as well as
consensus-building among federal and nonfederal parties.

Forestry Functions: Unresolved Issues Affect Forest Service and Bureau of
Land Management Organizations in Western Oregon (GAO/RCED-94-124,
May 17, 1994)

Summarizing efforts at the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land
Management to rethink their organizational structures and relationships,
GAO suggested that an agency-by-agency approach to downsizing and
restructuring may not have the potential to achieve efficiencies that could
be derived through a collaborative federal approach to land management.




Page 43                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
                              Appendix I
                              Annotated Bibliography of GAO Work on
                              Mission Fragmentation and Program
                              Overlap




International Environmental   International Environment: U.S. Funding of Environmental Programs and
Programs                      Activities (GAO/RCED-96-234, Sept. 30, 1996)

                              At least five federal agencies spent nearly $1 billion from 1993 through
                              1995 in support of 12 international environmental agreements. These
                              agencies exhibited significant differences in both the amount of their
                              spending and in the purposes for which the money was spent.

Hazardous Waste Cleanup       Federal Facilities: Consistent Relative Risk Evaluations Needed for
                              Prioritizing Cleanups (GAO/RCED-96-150, June 7, 1996)

                              EPA has designated 154 sites, involving facilities operated by at least five
                              federal departments, as priorities warranting further study and possible
                              cleanup. However, EPA’s listing does not fully and completely identify the
                              most contaminated facilities because, among other reasons, (1) some
                              federal agencies have not finished identifying the universe of their
                              contaminated sites or completed the preliminary assessment of the extent
                              of contamination, and (2) EPA has not developed evaluation priorities
                              because of the poor quality of data received from other federal agencies.

Water Quality                 Water Quality: A Catalogue of Related Federal Programs (GAO/RCED-96-173,
                              June 19, 1996)

                              GAO identified 72 federal programs and other initiatives in eight
                              departments and agencies that assist states, municipalities, individuals,
                              and others in their efforts to improve and/or protect water quality from
                              various pollution threats.




(935224)                      Page 44                                 GAO/AIMD-97-146 Addressing Program Overlap
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