How to Enhance Congressional Oversight

T-GGD-90-40: Published: May 8, 1990. Publicly Released: May 8, 1990.

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GAO discussed how congressional oversight of executive agencies and programs can greatly enhance program operations by focusing on program and policy implementation. GAO noted that executive agencies need: (1) necessary mission planning systems to provide organizational direction; (2) modern and accurate financial and management information systems to monitor operations; (3) effective evaluation efforts to assess program efficiency and effectiveness; and (4) dynamic human resources programs with good mechanisms for holding managers accountable for results. GAO believes that Congress needs to: (1) place more emphasis on a range of issues surrounding integration of housing and health care services for the low-income elderly; (2) engage in continued dialogue with agency political leadership in the future; (3) insist that agency officials develop plans and time tables for correcting problems; and (4) make it clear to agency officials that they will be held accountable for taking effective corrective actions.

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