Progress in Improving Program and Budget Information for Congressional Use

PAD-78-78: Published: Aug 29, 1978. Publicly Released: Aug 29, 1978.

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By law, the Comptroller General conducts a program to develop standard terms and classifications for federal fiscal, budgetary, and program-related information; to identify congressional needs for such information; and to monitor recurring reporting requirements of Congress and make recommendations for changes in these requirements.

Progress has been made in these areas over the past year. In terms of standardizing information, the GAO analyses of budget concepts and practices have covered studies of executive branch unexpended balances of budget authority and funding procedures and the recording of budget authority in federal programs. Other GAO standardization efforts have included: (1) continued development of an inventory of federal programs and activities with associated legislative authorization and budget information; (2) testimony before congressional committees on pending oversight reform legislation; (3) identifying and describing federal regulatory programs; (4) efforts at implementation of a revised structure of budget function categories; and (5) work in developing standard data codes. GAO also provided lists of programs and activities under each congressional committee's jurisdiction, along with relevant authorization, budget, and related information. The GAO database for use in monitoring congressional reporting requirements, responding to congressional inquiries, and developing recommendations has been updated. In addition, the executive branch took steps to improve its reporting of fiscal, budgetary, and program-related information and to improve the budgetary process.

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