U.S. Information Agency:

Issues Related to Reinvention Planning in the Office of Cuba Broadcasting

NSIAD-96-110: Published: May 13, 1996. Publicly Released: Jun 12, 1996.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the United States Information Agency's (USIA) Office of Cuba Broadcasting (OCB), focusing on the: (1) OCB reinvention plan; (2) role and use of OCB research analysts; (3) reasons behind a former OCB director's resignation; (4) extent to which Radio Marti is in compliance with Voice of America (VOA) broadcast standards; and (5) investigation into allegations of management reprisals at OCB.

GAO found that: (1) the OCB plan to reduce costs and eliminate nonessential staff was consistent with overall executive branch goals and the recommendations of the Radio Marti/TV Marti advisory panel, but was not based on a comprehensive cost-benefit assessment of key OCB departments and support functions; (2) the former director of OCB resigned because of frustration stemming from his unsuccessful attempts to further streamline OCB or implement the reinvention plan; (3) in 1992, OCG removed research analysts from on-air programming, and questions began to surface about their policy compliance role; (4) current news and program officials believe that the analytical unit's services have diminished in importance; (5) the USIA Office of Inspector General (OIG) is investigating allegations of management reprisals in OCB, but the investigation has been controversial because of the release of partial information and affidavits during the investigation; and (6) USIA referred the conduct of the OIG investigation to the President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency for investigation.

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