With the 10th Anniversary of the E-Government Act of 2002's passage approaching, the GAO was asked to (1) assess the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) and agencies' efforts to fulfill the Act's requirements to establish leadership and organizational responsibilities and (2) evaluate agencies' progress in meeting the Act's requirements to enhance public access to government information and services.
The GAO found that the OMB and other agencies have taken steps to carry out leadership and organizational responsibilities as called for by the Act. Specifically, OMB's Office of Electronic Government has issued key guidance for agencies on complying with the requirements of the Act and coordinated annual reporting to Congress on agency compliance with the Act.
In addition, the Federal Chief Information Officers Council has taken actions, such as publicizing best practices and recommendations for more efficient use of information technology and assisting in the implementation of the Act's requirements. Further, executive branch agencies have made significant progress in carrying out leadership responsibilities under the Act, including designating officials with responsibility for ensuring compliance with the Act, issuing internal policy and guidance, and developing performance measures.
However, while OMB and agencies have reported annually on their compliance with the Act as required, OMB did not always require agencies to report on all of the Act's provisions and has not been explicit in communicating to Congress provisions that it is not reporting on and the reasons why. For example, from fiscal year 2006 to fiscal year 2009, OMB did not require agencies to report on how they enhanced public participation by electronic means for development and issuance of regulations. OMB officials stated that each year's reporting requirements reflected particular administration priorities and were tailored to reduce the reporting burden on agencies.