Mission Budgeting:

Discussion and Illustration of the Concept in Research and Development Programs

PSAD-77-124: Published: Jul 27, 1977. Publicly Released: Jul 27, 1977.

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The mission budget concept offers significant potential for alleviating problems with the way the federal budget is currently presented and the limitations it imposes on congressional review. The common complaint with the present system is that Congress gets a great mass of detail but not a coherent picture of what the money is for and why it is needed. A mission budget structure links an agency's basic responsibilities, or missions, to its activities and their proposed funding. Descending levels of the structure then focus more sharply on specific purposes, needs, and programs to satisfy them.

Matter for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Matter: Congress should begin to experiment with mission budgeting in carrying out its budget review, authorization, and appropriation functions because the concept has significant potential for: (1) helping the President and federal agencies formulate budgets according to end purposes, needs, and priorities; (2) strengthening congressional policy review and program oversight; (3) achieving greater public accountability in the use of federal funds; (4) providing one budget system oriented to both executive and congressional needs; (5) clarifying mission responsibilities of the federal agencies and keeping them relevant to national policies and needs; and (6) serving as a structural foundation for zero-base and sunset reviews as well as for governmental reorganization.


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