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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Labor and State performance reports earn top ratings

"The Labor, State and Transportation departments earned top spots in an independent organization's rankings of the quality of agencies' 2005 annual performance reports, and Treasury jumped up significantly.

George Mason University's Mercatus Center released its seventh Annual Performance Report Scorecard on Tuesday, rating and ranking agencies on the transparency, public benefits and leadership evidenced in their performance and accountability reports. The ratings measure the quality of the reports, rather than agencies' success at meeting the goals outlined in them.

David Walker, comptroller general and head of the Government Accountability Office, presented the score card at Tuesday's event. 'We owe it to taxpayers to provide transparency for what they get for their tax dollars,' he said.

The 24 agencies included under the Chief Financial Officers Act have produced performance and accountability reports each year since 1999, when a reporting requirement in the 1993 Government Performance and Results Act first took effect, and Mercatus has issued its score card on those reports every year.

The score card awards agencies up to 60 points, spread across 12 criteria designed to evaluate the performance reports for how accessible, readable and usable they are; their delineation of program outcomes and costs; and the extent to which leadership is demonstrated by justifying agency performance and making links between programs, goals and policies. "

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