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Terry Gerton, President and CEO of NAPA, discusses NAPA’s recommendations for the next administration to improve collaboration in government by using the process of the Cross-Agency Priority Goals

The Office of Management and Budget has a new update on the Cross-Agency Priority (CAP) Goals in the President’s Management Agenda (PMA). The changes reflect progress that OMB says it has made on the PMA. The National Academy of Public Administration has new recommendations for the next administration to emphasize greater collaboration in government.

Terry Gerton, President and CEO of NAPA, explained that she and her colleagues at NAPA released an action plan to help the next administration, reelected or newly elected, engage better to build public trust. Many of the recommendations focus on how OMB can use the CAP Goal process to create change across federal agencies.

Gerton explained that OMB can link agencies’ goals to the PMA using the CAP Goal process so that the public can track performance. The CAP Goals help the agencies work more collaboratively, “to really focus on the outcomes of their programs and less about the compliance and tracking processes,” Gerton said. The idea with using the CAP Goals is to get different agencies to work on the same objective, which is “key for improving the delivery of the program,” Gerton explained.

NAPA has been a strong advocate for improving intergovernmental relationships and “recreating that civic layer where citizens and residents are engaged in government decision-making all the way through the process,” Gerton said.

Building capacity is another area of focus of the work from NAPA, relating to increasing skills, infrastructure, data, and analytics in order to improve citizens’ experiences with systems. Gerton said that the concept of building capacity is being implemented by the federal government in its response to the coronavirus pandemic, through providing funds to state and local governments for improving elections, and providing resources for investing in IT needed for telework.

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