New Senate Task Force on Performance

The Senate Budget Committee has created a new Task Force on Government Performance, according to a press release issued this morning.  To be led by Senator Mark Warner, the task force “will examine the federal government’s management framework and identify opportunities to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of federal programs and services.”

Senator Mark Warner
Senator Mark Warner

The task force “will also examine how performance and program evaluation information is used during the budget process and draw on best practices from public, private, and nonprofit experience, and from previous federal performance reform efforts.” 

Senator Warner will hold his first hearing next week, on October 29th.  According to the press release: “This hearing will explore opportunities for improvement to federal program evaluation and performance initiatives and provide updates on current executive branch efforts. It will also explore lessons learned from past performance reform efforts in the U.S. and the United Kingdom and how to generate more meaningful performance information in Congress.” 

Interestingly, this effort seems to dovetail neatly into some of the Obama Administration’s efforts, such as its recent memo to agencies on increasing the use of program evaluation and evidence-based decision making.

Senator Warner’s interest in government performance reaches back to the days when he was governor of Virginia and helped create that state’s performance management framework.  His leadership resulted in that state being rated as the best managed state in the country, as rated by the Pew Center on the States.  Maybe he will bring some of those ideas to the federal government!

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