OMB may seek new ways to pay for lines-of-business projects

OMB may seek new ways to pay for lines-of-business projects

HERSHEY, Pa.'The Office of Management and Budget is considering use of an innovation fund to pay for its lines-of-business consolidation projects.

John Sindelar, OMB's program manager for the e-government initiative, yesterday said such a fund would be a way to get money up front to pay for the projects and then pay it back to the fund from savings the systems garner.

'It would be similar to a governmentwide working capital fund,' Sindelar said at the 14th annual Executive Leadership Conference sponsored by the Industry Advisory Council and the American Council for Technology. It essentially is a one-time appropriation as seed money from Congress to help establish cross-servicing centers and migrating customer agencies to those centers.

OMB set up three task forces to develop business cases to consolidate agency financial management, human resources and grants administration. Two of the task forces submitted business cases in September for setting up shared service centers for financial management and human resources [see GCN story]. A third task force recommended using a consortium approach for a grants administration system [see GCN story].

Sindelar said OMB has not made a decision on whether to ask Congress for this type of fund, but it is an option. OMB has had little luck getting congressional approval for central funding of cross-agency projects. Over the past three years, the administration requested $100 million but received only $13 million for its Quicksilver e-government projects fund.

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