Federal Relations

February 19, 2009

OMB Releases Recovery Act Implementation Guidance to Federal Agencies

Peter Orszag, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director, has issued guidance (see link below) to federal agency heads on how to implement use of funding provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The linked memorandum provides the first installment of government-wide guidance for carrying out programs and activities enacted in the legislation. As was explained by NIH Acting Director Raynard King in a briefing yesterday, the memo states that an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability will be required of those receiving funds from the Recovery Act.

The OMB guidance issued yesterday contains action steps that federal agencies must take immediately in order to meet these objectives and to implement the Act effectively. Of particular note, the guidance addresses federal agency requirements to provide spending and performance data to the “Recovery.gov” website. The guidance establishes requirements for various aspects of Recovery Act planning and implementation. These requirements are intended to meet accountability objectives:

  • Funds are awarded and distributed in a prompt, fair, and reasonable manner;
  • The recipients and uses of all funds are transparent to the public, and the benefits to the public are reported clearly, accurately, and in a timely manner;
  • Funds are used for authorized purposes and instances of fraud, waste, error, and abuse are mitigated;
  • Projects funded under this Act avoid unnecessary delays and cost overruns; and
  • Program goals are achieved, including specific program outcomes and improved results on broader economic indicators.

Additional guidance providing further detail and covering a fuller range of items will be issued within the next 30-60 days. As individual agencies issue implementation guidance, the UW Office of Federal Relations will post details to this website.

OMB Recovery Act Guidance to Federal Agencies (click here)