OMB targeting July for release of data model

The Office of Management and Budget is aiming for the end of July to release the Data Reference Model'the final piece to the Federal Enterprise Architecture.

Karen Evans, OMB administrator for e-government and IT, said the model should improve agencies' ability to collect and use data.

'We are targeting for the end of next month because there has been a lot of discussion of how that model should read,' Evans said earlier this week at House subcommittee hearing on geospatial information. 'We want to make sure when the model is released, no matter who you are, you will be able to read it and understand exactly what we are talking about as far as data that we are collecting as we go forward.'

Evans said the model will help in OMB's collection of information on the types of geospatial data agencies are using and how much.

'With the release of the DRM, we intend to specifically talk about data and how it relates to the [A-16] circular so that the agencies will know how to report those investments in to us,' she said. 'We will be able to get great visibility into [the data] and be able to promote partnerships between agencies as well as through state and local governments.'

Linda Koontz, the General Accounting Office's director of information management issues, said the data model will assist the administration in obtaining the 'kind of complete, consistent and detailed information that OMB really needs in order to identify and reduce redundancies.'

OMB Circular A-16 details the information agencies must submit to OMB, including geospatial data.

OMB had hoped to finish the DRM in time for it to be used in the 2006 budget process, but with business cases due in early September, agencies will have little time to make full use of it.

The DRM is the last of the five models that break the Federal EA into layers, which also include the Business, Technical, Performance and Service Component reference models. OMB, which has been working on the DRM since 2002, released it in mid-March to agencies for comment.

The model has taken more than a two years to complete, longer than the other four reference models combined, OMB officials said.

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