Grants Management: Enhancing Performance Accountability Provisions Could Lead to Better Results Page: 5 of 52
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Accountability * Integrity * Reliability
United States Government Accountability Office
Washington, DC 20548
September 29, 2006
The Honorable Todd Platts
Chairman, Subcommittee on Government Management,
Finance and Accountability
Committee on Government Reform
House of Representatives
Dear Mr. Chairman:
The federal government faces an array of challenges and opportunities to
enhance performance, ensure accountability, and position the nation for
the future. A number of overarching trends-including the nation's long-
term fiscal imbalance-drive the need to reexamine what the federal
government does, how it does it, who does it, and how it gets financed.
Because grants to state and local governments constituted nearly 20
percent of total federal outlays in fiscal year 2005, maximizing the extent
to which grants achieve their long-term performance goals and objectives
is critical to successfully addressing the challenges of the 21st century.
In recent years, interest in federal grant performance accountability has
grown. For the purposes of this report, performance accountability is
defined as the mechanisms by which individuals or organizations are held
accountable for meeting specified performance-related expectations.
Consistent with the decade-long trend toward an increased results
orientation and expectation for performance accountability as evidenced
by the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA),'
performance accountability mechanisms in federal grants have become
more common. For example, performance assessment mechanisms are
present in grants authorized by both the Job Training Partnership Act and
its successor program, the Workforce Investment Act of 1988 (WIA) and
the No Child Left Behind Act.2 More recently, the Office of Management
and Budget (OMB) developed the Program Assessment Rating Tool
(PART), which, among other things, holds federal programs and their
partners accountable for performance. Simply monitoring and reporting
performance can also encourage performance accountability and
'Pub. L. No. 103-62, 107 Stat. 285 (1993).
2Pub. L. No. 105-220, Pub. L. No. 107-110.
GAO-06-1046 Grants Management
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United States. Government Accountability Office. Grants Management: Enhancing Performance Accountability Provisions Could Lead to Better Results, report, September 29, 2006; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc296525/m1/5/: accessed April 23, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.