GAO Comments Concerning the Senate Rules Committee Report on Sunset Zero-Base Review Legislation

PAD-77-28: Published: Dec 23, 1976. Publicly Released: Dec 23, 1976.

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Comments are made on a committee report concerning the Government Economy and Spending Reform Act of 1976. The report is viewed as an excellent summary of issues and problems to be resolved in developing zero-base review and sunset processes for federal programs.

Six basic requirements are identified to ensure effective reevaluation of federal policies and activities: (1) establishment of a realistic and generally acceptable schedule for reviewing programs; (2) assurance of universal coverage of the review process; (3) establishment of an agreed-upon list of federal programs; (4) matching review objectives with review capabilities; (5) integration of sunset reviews with the Congressional and Executive budget process; and (6) establishment of a procedure for central coordination and control of the review process. Sunset zero-base review legislation could cause substantial impacts on state and local governments, primarily in those programs providing assistance to state and local governments.

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