Due to concerns about long standing delays in the security clearance process, Congress mandated reforms in the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA), which requires, among other things, that the executive branch report annually to Congress. Since 2005, the Department of Defense's (DOD) clearance program has been on GAO's high-risk list due to delays and incomplete documentation. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) conducts much of the government's clearance investigations. In 2007, the Director of National Intelligence and DOD established a Joint Reform Team to coordinate governmentwide improvement efforts for the process. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) oversees these efforts. Based on two recent GAO reports, this statement addresses (1) progress in reducing delays at DOD, (2) opportunities for improving executive branch reports to Congress and (3) the extent to which joint reform efforts reflect key factors for reform. GAO independently analyzed DOD clearances granted in fiscal year 2008, assessed the executive branch's 2006-2009 reports to Congress, and compared three joint reform reports to key transformation practices. GAO previously recommended that OMB improve the transparency in executive branch reporting and establish a strategic framework. OMB concurred or partially concurred with these recommendations.
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