Seven weeks after freezing Federal hiring, the President issued Executive Order 13781 on March 13, 2017, “intended to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of the executive branch.” A month later, OMB followed up with Memorandum M-17-22, requiring Executive Branch agencies including USAID and the Department of State to submit reform plans and workforce plans to OMB by September 2017. In response, USAID helped develop a joint State-USAID reform plan and produced a USAID supplemental reform plan that focused on internal issues.
Given the scope of this undertaking and the desire for transparency, the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations asked us to review USAID’s process in developing its reform plans and its compliance with congressional notification requirements. We described both the events and actions taken by USAID to develop its reform plans and the assessments of USAID’s actions by those involved in the process. We also determined that some USAID actions raised questions about compliance with appropriations requirements.