Manufacturing Extension Partnership: Most Federal Spending Directly Supports Work with Manufacturers, but Distribution Could Be Improved

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A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Of the approximately $608 million spent by the Department of Commerce's (Commerce) National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in fiscal years 2009 through 2013 on the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program, NIST used most of the funds to directly support MEP centers. Specifically, NIST spent about $495 million on awards to centers and spent the rest on contracts, staff, agency-wide overhead charges, and other items, some of which NIST considered direct support and some of which NIST considered administrative spending. Although NIST is not required ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. March 27, 2014.

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Description

A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Of the approximately $608 million spent by the Department of Commerce's (Commerce) National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in fiscal years 2009 through 2013 on the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program, NIST used most of the funds to directly support MEP centers. Specifically, NIST spent about $495 million on awards to centers and spent the rest on contracts, staff, agency-wide overhead charges, and other items, some of which NIST considered direct support and some of which NIST considered administrative spending. Although NIST is not required to track, and has not historically tracked, administrative spending, NIST officials told GAO the agency developed definitions of direct support and administrative spending in fiscal year 2013 in response to congressional interest, then conducted an analysis of fiscal year 2013 federal MEP program spending using those definitions. NIST defines direct support spending as spending that directly supports the MEP center system's work with manufacturing firms, such as awards to centers or contracts to train MEP center staff on how to quickly assess innovative ideas for new products. NIST considers all other spending to be administrative, including spending on performance evaluations for MEP centers or on agency-wide overhead fees that pay for facilities operations and maintenance at the NIST campus. Using these definitions, NIST estimated that about 88.5 percent of federal MEP program spending in fiscal year 2013 was for direct support, and the remaining 11.5 percent was for administration."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • March 27, 2014

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Manufacturing Extension Partnership: Most Federal Spending Directly Supports Work with Manufacturers, but Distribution Could Be Improved, report, March 27, 2014; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc298430/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.