Paperwork Reduction Act:
Burden Increases and Violations Persist
GAO-02-598T: Published: Apr 11, 2002. Publicly Released: Apr 11, 2002.
This testimony discusses the implementation of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and information collection authorizations from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) that either expired or were otherwise inconsistent with the act. GAO found that federal paperwork rose by 290 million burden hours during fiscal year 2001--the largest one-year increase since the act was amended and recodified in 1995. This occurred largely because the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) increased its paperwork estimate by about 250 million burden hours during the year. Most of the paperwork increase at IRS resulted from changes made by the agency--not because of new statutes. Federal agencies providing information to OMB identified more than 400 violations of the act during fiscal year 2001. Some of these violations have been going on for years, and they collectively represent substantial opportunity costs.