OMB Touts Money and Time Saved From Regulatory Cuts, Eliminating Busywork

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President’s management agenda update highlights 100 “burden-reducing” initiatives. 

The Office of Management and Budget said on Thursday that billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of work hours have been saved from the Trump administration's regulatory changes and improvements to administrative processes.

OMB released a burden reduction update to the president’s management agenda, the president’s long-term vision for modernizing the government. The update, which focuses on the administration’s cornerstone policy of streamlining regulations and making administrative processes more efficient, summarizes activity from the start of the Trump administration until March 31, 2019. 

“As part of the [management agenda’s] Shifting from Low-Value to High-Value Work Cross-Agency Priority Goal, agencies are shifting resources from outdated and redundant requirements and processes to accomplishing mission outcomes,” OMB said. “[They] are delivering efficient and effective results.”

One example of success OMB reported was that the Health and Human Services Department eliminated $5.7 billion in healthcare administrative costs. This was through the Patients Over Paperwork initiative, which aimed at cutting “red-tape” paperwork. 

Another example cited was that the Homeland Security Department saved employees over 3,000 hours each year by eliminating the requirement to submit an annual Comprehensive Acquisition Status Report to Congress. The department  “[justified] that the majority of the report’s content was already provided to Congress via other departmental reports,” according to OMB. Other agencies highlighted in the update were: the Labor and Housing and Urban Development departments, General Services Administration and Social Security Administration. 

The update encompassed over 100 “burden-reducing initiatives” reported by 24 major federal agencies, the majority of which are focused on process improvement and standardization. Other types of initiatives included: digitalization, robotics process automation, shared services, and staff and regulatory reform. 

“The president’s management agenda maps out a critical path forward for the federal workforce," a senior administration official said in a statement. "With the ever increasing complexity of the world today, it’s paramount that our workforce is first and foremost agile. This will help improve the ability of the federal government to provide quality service to American people, and to be a better steward of taxpayer dollars.”

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