The Information Quality Act: OMB's Guidance and Initial Implementation
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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The Information Quality Act IQA, sometimes referred to as the Data Quality Act, was enacted in December 2000 as Section 515 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2001 Public Law 106-554. The act required the Office of Management and Budget OMB to issue guidance to federal agencies designed to ensure the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information disseminated to the public. It also required agencies to issue their own information quality guidelines, and to establish administrative mechanisms that allow affected persons to seek correction of information maintained and disseminated by the agencies that does not comply with the OMB guidance. Although some observers said the IQA would improve the quality of agency science and regulation, others viewed the act as a tool by which regulated parties could slow or even stop new health, safety, and environmental standards. Because of the scant legislative history of the IQA and its lack of detail, OMBs guidance interpreting key provisions in the act has a major effect on its implementation. In those guidelines, OMB noted that the act applies to virtually all federal agencies and established the broad scope of the guidelines by defining information as any communication or representation of knowledge such as facts or data, in any medium or form. Similarly, the guidelines define dissemination as any agency initiated or sponsored distribution of information to the public. OMB indicated that quality encompasses elements of utility, objectivity, and integrity, and said agencies can generally presume that data are objective if they have been subject to an independent peer review process.
- Information Science
- Sociology and Law