Office of Management and Budget Launches Pilot Program

As President Obama launches his plan to reorganize the federal government, the White House is getting an unexpected boost from one of the major agencies tasked with overseeing the change.

In a Office of Management and Budget (OMB) memorandum issued last week from Deputy Director for Management and Chief Performance Officer,  Jeffrey Zients, now tapped to head OMB, described a plan to create a "comprehensive list" of government programs ahead of a pilot program to coordinate trade, export and commerce.

Affected agencies include the Department of Commerce, Small Business Administration, Department of Labor, and eight other federal agencies.

Agencies tapped for the pilot program would be responsible for creating an inventory of federal programs to better coordinate funds and projects across the 11 departments targeted for reorganization under the Obama Administration seeks power to shrink the federal government ahead of the general election in November.

The OMB memorandum, Inventory of Government Programs: Trade, Export and Competitiveness Pilot, was issued on the same day that the President debuted his plan to merge six major agencies tasked with facilitating commerce and trade into one superagency.

If successful, the reorganization would be the first time a Chief Executive has been able to do so since President Reagan in the 1980s.

Not surprisingly, the move is being met with mixed results from members of D.C.'s permanent government of bureaucrats and officials. It is estimated that over 1,000 to 2,000 jobs would be cut during the reorganization, a brutal reality known obliquely as efficiency.

Though the OMB program has the support of the Administration and Democrats in Congress, the move is not likely to be welcomed by federal employees.  Several thousand jobs have already been lost as the government sector continues to shrink.  According to the Washington Post's Plum Line blog, over 280,000 jobs were lost in 2011, mostly state and local employees such as teachers, firefighters, police officers and others.

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