Accountability and Performance Update – March 14-20, 2022

Colorado’s “Evidence Continuum” Promotes Efficient, Effective Programs

Pew Charitable Trust, Results First

Colorado is a leader among states using data and research to strengthen their budget investment choices. Since 2014, it has applied research evidence to fund programs that work. For example, the state’s Office of State Planning and Budgeting requires evidence in an agency’s budget requests for changes to program funds, including expansions, reductions, and new projects.

“Significant Progress” Can Mean Allowing More Road Deaths

Washington Post

Half of states set goals for more people to die in crashes. Twenty-one planned for more pedestrians and cyclists to be hurt or killed. . . . The goals are part of a target-setting system that federal transportation officials devised in 2016 to measure what the public is getting for tens of billions of dollars from Washington that states spend each year. But by permitting targets that involve lower levels of performance, it has allowed states to do worse while still being labeled as making “significant progress” — a designation thatavoids consequences such as limits on how money can be spent.

Federal Billions and a Lost World of Accountability

Governing (Donald Kettl)

The stimulus program that followed the Great Recession was a model for tracking projects and spending down to the ZIP code level. We don’t have that with the American Rescue Plan, dooming us to fight about what matters most.

Portland’s New Review of Its Audit Recommendations

Barrett & Greene

Many audit offices do reviews of recommendations and the city of Portland, Oregon has just done a notable job by creating a visual dashboard comparing how agencies responded to recommendations made by City Auditor Mary Hull Caballero through 2021.

The Promise of Program Budgeting (Webinar, April 7)


There are many reasons to consider adopting program budgeting, but perhaps the most important is its ability to create a more transparent budget and budget development process. A program budget shows precisely what the government does and how much it costs.

Resource of the Week:  Centers for Civic Impact

The Centers for Civic Impact at Johns Hopkins University hosts three performance-related initiatives.  (1) The Center for Government Excellence, which provides coaching and technical assistance to city governments and nonprofits; (2) the GovEx Academy, which provides training and education; and (3) the Center for Applied Public Research, which supports evidence-based research and its application.

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