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Public Statements


Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. CARPER. Mr. President, I rise today to commend my colleagues in the Senate and House for coming together last month to pass the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014, which is known as the DATA Act. The measure enjoyed near unanimous support in both bodies, and I expect President Obama to sign the DATA Act into law shortly.

This legislation seeks to ensure that Federal agencies have a framework in place to standardize their financial data, and will better ensure that expenditure data for all of our agencies is accessible to taxpayers and Congress. This will represent an important step toward a more transparent and responsive government.

Passage of the DATA Act, though, is merely the first step towards improving transparency into how the Federal Government spends taxpayer dollars. Now comes the hard part--implementation. I know that Federal agencies and the Office of Management and Budget will face challenges in implementing the bill. To that effect, I have received a letter from Beth Cobert, the Deputy Director for Management at the Office of Management and Budget, expressing concern about implementing the bill without additional resources.

As with any legislation, our job does not end when the President signs the bill. I believe that those of us here in Congress have the responsibility to work with the administration to ensure that laws--such as the DATA Act--that we enact have the support they need to be implemented. That is why I will work with my colleagues on the Appropriations committees to help make sure Federal agencies have the resources they need to meet the requirements of the bill. I invite my colleagues who worked so hard to pass this legislation to join me in this continuing effort.

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