March, 2009

Accountability and Transparency in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Key materials
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The $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is said to contain "unprecedented accountability and transparency." This will only be true if accountability encompasses actual performance outcomes and results and if transparency requires full disclosure and explanation of all outcomes. In order to facilitate transparent reporting of program goals and missions, agencies and oversight authorities should use existing frameworks and mechanisms already in place, such as the Government and Performance Results Act of 1993. There is more to accountability and transparency than preventing fraud, waste, and abuse.