In response to the President Obama's remarks presenting a "new management agenda" and calling on Congress to provide him with blanket reorganization authority, House Oversight and Government Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., offered the following statement:
"This time, instead of trying to find a way to work around Congress, President Obama needs to approach Congress as a partner in reorganizing federal agencies and improving government performance. These are issues that Congress has said, on a bipartisan basis, it wants to address. There is common ground on these problems and members of both parties and both chambers stand ready to work as partners with the President."
On Wednesday, July 10th at 9:30 a.m. the Committee will hold a hearing focused on Government Accountability Office reviews of serious problems with management of performance and financial information throughout the federal government under existing laws.
In March 2011, Chairman Issa and Ranking Member Elijah Cummings, D-Md., joined leaders of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in requesting that the Congress "be brought into the process early on, so that [the Committees] can contribute collaboratively in the process of developing proposal."
The Committee received only a cursory, non-collaborative briefing prior to the introduction of the President's thumbnail proposal released the following year.
The Committee has held several hearings this year on government reorganization. At an April 9, 2013 hearing on reducing duplicative programs, a GAO expert told the Committee, "the reorganizations that work best are those in which the Congress is deeply involved at the outset in making sure that they understand what the proposals are going to be, what will be done, and how it will be done."
At a June 18th hearing, outside experts, including some who had previously participated in government reorganizations, broadly supported a collaborative approach involving Congress.