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ROLE 5: Assist Elected Officials or Citizens

External Reporting, Capacity Building, or Advocacy for the use of Performance Information

Below, “external stakeholders” include, for example, non-executive elected officials, the general citizenry, interest groups, grantees and contractors (non-profit & for profit), and the media.

Practice 5c. Assist external decision making: Assist external stakeholders in using performance information to make decisions.

The auditor may assist elected officials, citizens, or other external stakeholders by providing them with “user-friendly” access to performance information.  The auditor may educate external stakeholders in using performance information for decision-making and accountability, or advise them in how the information may be relevant to specific decisions.  The auditor may assess service performance data, or broader indicators of public conditions such as community, regional, or statewide outcomes or “benchmarks,” and use such assessments to issue interpretations of what the information means to external stakeholders.  The auditor may also conduct evaluation studies and issue reports that have policy implications on specific aspects of service performance or broader outcomes or conditions of concern to external stakeholders.

The Florida Office of Program Policy and Government Accountability (OPPAGA) has been using performance measures in studies to assist legislative decisions, including a ten-year cycle of “Justification Reviews” of agencies and newer “Sunset Reviews.” OPPAGA also maintains an extensive website for anyone with an interest in state government, with a special intention of educating new legislators.  This site includes information on over 300 agencies and programs and links to their performance measures and budgeted standards, reports on the performance-based budget system and most other OPPAGA studies, and school district performance reviews. … Read more

In Portland, Oregon, the City Auditor provides two staff to the Portland-Multnomah Progress Board to help identify, monitor, and report on outcome indicators (called “benchmarks”) of important community conditions, made accessible on a website.  Since 1998 these benchmarks staff have also published three special reports on in-depth studies of particular benchmarks or issues, as an aid in interpreting trends and policy options. … Read More