WASHINGTON –U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner raised concerns today about the Obama Administration’s proposed changes to the bipartisan Digital Accountability and Transparency (DATA) Act. The White House Office of Management and Budget’s suggested edits include eliminating important data standards that would make it easier for taxpayers and policymakers to hold the government more accountable, as well as limiting the information to be posted on USASpending.gov. The DATA Act, as introduced by Sen. Warner and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), would establish an open and accountable system for tracking every dollar spent by the federal government. The House companion legislation is co-sponsored by Reps. Darrell Issa (R-CA-49), who serves as chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD-7), who serves as the Committee’s Ranking Member.
"The Obama administration talks a lot about transparency, but these comments reflect a clear attempt to gut the DATA Act. DATA reflects years of bipartisan, bicameral work, and to propose substantial, unproductive changes this late in the game is unacceptable,” Sen. Warner said. “We look forward to passing the DATA Act, which had near universal support in its House passage and passed unanimously out of its Senate committee. I will not back down from a bill that holds the government accountable and provides taxpayers the transparency they deserve."
Sen. Warner, chairman of the Budget Committee’s bipartisan Government Performance Task Force, has consistently worked to protect taxpayers by demanding greater efficiency and better performance from federal agencies and programs. Sen. Warner was a lead sponsor of the 2010 Government Performance and Modernization Act, which is now law and requires federal agencies to annually report on their highest and lowest performing programs. Sen. Warner also has been a leading voice on Capitol Hill for the reform or elimination of federal programs that overlap or are ineffective.