USDA Steering Committee Charter.pdf by rlj20071

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									United States Department of Agriculture
      Office of the Chief Information Officer
           Open Government Program



                     Charter


    Open Government Steering Committee




                     Version 1.1
                   January 22, 2010




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I      PURPOSE
The purpose of this Charter is to define the authority, membership, roles and
responsibilities of the Open Government Steering Committee its Open Government
Working Groups, and their relationships to other internal and external bodies.

The Open Government Steering Committee is an interagency management structure
established to oversee and ensure proper agency accountability and compliance with the
Open Government Initiative from the Office of Management and Budget (December 8,
2009). The Open Government Steering Committee will lead the Department’s
transformation to a citizen-centric service delivery provider in accordance with customer
and industry expectations; and provide guidance delineated in mandates such as the
Federal Records Act, the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Government Performance and
Result Act, Clinger-Cohen Act, Government Paperwork Elimination Act, Freedom to E-
File Act of 2000, OMB Circular A-130, and President Obama’s Management Agenda.
The Steering Committee will strive to champion the use of Open Government initiatives
as an enabler for delivering enhanced USDA products and services more effectively and
efficiently.

II     BACKGROUND

The Executive Office, the Congress, and citizens are challenging the Federal Government
to change its program delivery processes to realize the opportunities enabled by the
information age. Customer expectations are driving the public sector to offer electronic
business options equal to the best of private industry. The Federal Government has
created a broad vision of providing services electronically to other Federal, State and
local government agencies, businesses, and employees. While USDA has made some
progress in meeting these challenges, much remains to be done.

The three principles of transparency, participation, and collaboration form the
cornerstone of an open government. Transparency promotes accountability by providing
the public with information about what the Government is doing. Participation allows
members of the public to contribute ideas and expertise so that their government can
make policies with the benefit of information that is widely dispersed in society.
Collaboration improves the effectiveness of Government by encouraging partnerships
and cooperation within the Federal Government, across levels of government, and
between the Government and private institutions. While information technology will help
facilitate this transformation, Open Government is primarily about changing the way
USDA conducts business.

III    AUTHORITY
The Assistant Secretary for Administration directed each mission area and staff office to
appoint a Senior Executive Sub Cabinet member from the political and career ranks to
serve on the Open Government Steering Committee and oversee and advise its Working
Groups. The Open Government Steering Committee and its Working Groups will lead

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planning and implementation efforts for Open Government in conjunction with the Office
of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) within the Departmental Administration.

In the Memorandum on Transparency and Open Government, issued on January 21,
2009, the President instructed the Director of the Office of Management and Budget
(OMB) to issue an Open Government Directive. Responding to that instruction, OMB
released the Open Government Directive, empowering and directing the Secretaries of
executive departments and agencies to take specific actions to implement the principles
of transparency, participation, and collaboration in the President's Memorandum. This
Directive was informed by recommendations from the Federal Chief Technology Officer,
who solicited public comment through the White House Open Government Initiative.

IV     MEMBERSHIP AND STRUCTURE
The Open Government Steering Committee is comprised of Senior Executive Leaders
from the Sub Cabinet, both career and political, representing each mission area and staff
office. The Steering Committee is chaired by USDA’s Assistant Secretary for
Administration.

The members of the Open Government Advisory Council are Executive Sponsors
designated by a Mission Area Head from either the business or information technology
area. The Advisory Council is co-chaired by USDA’s Open Government Executive and a
member of the Council who is voted in by other members..

Members of the Advisory Council will serve as liaisons to the Open Government
Steering Committee, the Open Government Executive, and the Working Groups as well
as external committees such as those connected to the Federal CIO Council Open
Government Committee. Working across lines of business and in the best interests of
USDA, the Council will review recommendations made by the Working Groups and
provide feedback, or approval on work done to be submitted to the Open Government
Steering Committee.

The members of the Open Government Working Group(s) are Subject Matter experts
designated by a Mission Area Head from either the business or information technology
area, who can contribute to the work required to complete the tasks that will enable
USDA to become compliant with all transparency requirements. The Working Groups
will be chaired by a representative with expertise within the respective area, designated
by USDA’s Open Government Executive.

Member(s) from the Open Government Working Group(s) will serve as liaisons to other
working groups in the Department such as the Cyber-Security and Telecommunications
Advisory Councils and the USDA Webmasters group.

Each mission area will form an internal Mission Area Open Government Committee,
chaired by the mission area’s Open Government Advisory Council member, to work in
conjunction with and support of the broader enterprise Advisory Council and to develop


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agency-specific initiatives. The Mission Area Open Government Committees will be
comprised of program (business) leaders as well as specialists representing the Web
team, capital planning and investment control, public affairs, information technology,
security, privacy, forms management, and records management.


                     USDA Open Government Governance Structure


                Open Government Steering Committee
                                 Mr. Pearlie Reed

                  Open Government Advisory Council
                        Co-Chairs: Open Gov Executives

                             Open Gov Plan        Communications
                                                                     Additional
          Data Stewardship   Working Group         Working Group
                                                                   Working Group(s)
           Mr. Bobby Jones    Mr. Francisco        Ms. Amanda
                                                                         TBD
                               Salguero              Eamich
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V      ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

The Open Government Steering Committee is a strategy and policy and oversight
board that will serve as Committee to the Assistant Secretary for Administration.
Members of the Steering Committee will provide guidance and leadership in developing
Open Government mission, vision, goals and objectives, establishing a framework for
achieving Open Government objectives, and communicating Open Government as a
priority to all USDA managers and employees. The Steering Committee's specific
responsibilities include the following:

    a. Sponsor the vision and supporting strategies that will provide the ability to meet
       the requirements in the OMB Directive.

    b. Integrate Open Government transformation activities with other mission
       priorities.

    c. Identify cross-mission area issues that can benefit from a common Open Gov
       electronic service delivery solution.

    d. Champion Open Government internally, at both the Mission Area and
       Departmental level, as well as externally.


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   e. Highlight Open Government success stories at USDA and share best practices.

   f. Identify future Open Government opportunities at USDA at all levels:
      intergovernmental (i.e., state-local-federal-international), interdepartmental (i.e.,
      HHS, HUD, USDA, EPA etc.), enterprise-wide (i.e., USDA-wide, “corporate”),
      interagency (i.e., cross-mission area or involving two or more USDA agencies),
      and agency-specific.

The Open Government Advisory Council represents Executives who will sponsor and
coordinate activities related to Open Government on behalf of their respective agencies.
The Advisory Council’s specific responsibilities include the following:

   a. Champion Open Government internally, at both the Departmental and Agency
      levels, and externally.

   b. Highlight Open Government success stories at USDA and share best practices.

   c. Identify future Open Government opportunities at USDA at all levels:
      intergovernmental, interdepartmental, enterprise-wide, interagency, and agency-
      specific.

   d. Sponsor activities and work done by the Working Group, and provide
      recommendations to facilitate activities and work done at the Working Group
      level.

   e. Provide recommendations to the Open Government Steering Committee based on
      activities and initiatives occurring at and within the Agency level.

   f. Act as liaison Council to the Open Government Steering Committee and
      Executives in the Agencies.

Open Government Executives' responsibilities as the co-chairs of the Open
Government Steering Committee and its Advisory Council include the following:

   a. Facilitate the development and implementation of a Departmental Open
      Government Framework Program on behalf of the Assistant Secretary.

   b. In conjunction with the Assistant Secretary’s office, provide overall direction and
      guidance to the Program.

   c. Raise the USDA community’s awareness and understanding of Open
      Government.

   d. Provide agencies with necessary information regarding federal legislation and
      guidance on Open Government implementation and technologies as well as
      industry standards and best practices both internal and external to USDA.


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   e. Coordinate monitoring of Open Government implementation at USDA and
      prepare reporting to federal regulatory bodies as needed.

   f. Develop and maintain a current set of Open Government guidance and standards
      for the Department, as appropriate.

   g. Executives will rotate through the positions at various times in order to facilitate
      teamwork and mentorship from varying lines of business, and to provided the
      sponsorship needed for the project at various milestones.

The Open Government Working Groups represents specialists and experts who will
contribute and provide input on the products needed to achieve the goals of Open
Government.

   Data Stewardship Working Group

   a. Champion Open Government internally, at both the Mission Area and
      Departmental level, and externally.

   b. Highlight Open Government success stories at USDA and share best practices.

   c. Identify future Open Government opportunities at USDA at all levels:
      intergovernmental, interdepartmental, enterprise-wide, interagency, and agency-
      specific.

   d. Interact with other Advisory Councils (Cyber-Security, Telecommunications and
      other appropriate groups in the Department) as well as committees outside USDA
      to address interrelated issues, recommendations, and initiatives.

   e. Promote training, conferences and meetings to expand the understanding of Open
      Government and related activities throughout the Department.

   Open Gov Plan Working Group

   a. Champion Open Government internally, at both the Mission Area and
      Departmental level, and externally.

   b. Highlight Open Government success stories at USDA and share best practices.

   c. Identify future Open Government opportunities at USDA at all levels:
      intergovernmental, interdepartmental, enterprise-wide, interagency, and agency-
      specific.

   d. Contribute to and provide feedback on the Department’s Open Government
      Strategic and Tactical Plan.


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e. Coordinate and lead the member’s agency Open Government efforts, including
   the refinement and implementation of the agency’s Open Government tactical
   plan.

f. Develop and maintain detailed plans of action for complying with Freedom to E-
   File and/or GPEA (as appropriate) to include the identification of resources and
   the integration of Open Government tasks with other related activities (e.g.,
   capital planning, security planning, telecommunications planning).

g. Continually review and recommend improvements in the Open Government
   process to ensure that it links mission needs, information, and IT in an effective
   and efficient manner.

h. Review and recommend professional development strategies to ensure that the
   Federal workforce possesses the skills necessary to meet the challenges of
   effectively delivering programs and services connected to Open Government.

i. Interact with other Advisory Councils (Cyber-Security, Telecommunications and
   other appropriate groups in the Department) as well as committees outside USDA
   to address interrelated issues, recommendations, and initiatives.

j. Promote training, conferences and meetings to expand the understanding of Open
   Government and related activities throughout the Department.


Communications Working Group

a. Champion Open Government internally, at both the Mission Area and
   Departmental level, and externally.

b. Highlight Open Government success stories at USDA and share best practices.

c. Identify future Open Government opportunities at USDA at all levels:
   intergovernmental, interdepartmental, enterprise-wide, interagency, and agency-
   specific.

d. Continually review and recommend improvements in the Open Government
   process to ensure that it links mission needs, information, and IT in an effective
   and efficient manner.

e. Review and recommend guidance on the development of Open Government
   websites and applications, including the Section 508 compliance testing.

f. Interact with other Advisory Councils (Cyber-Security, Telecommunications,
   USDA Webmasters group and other appropriate groups in the Department) as
   well as committees outside USDA to address interrelated issues,
   recommendations, and initiatives.

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     g. Promote training, conferences and meetings to expand the understanding of Open
        Government and related activities throughout the Department.


VI      MEETINGS AND COMMUNICATIONS
The Open Government Steering Committee will meet monthly until the approval and
publication of the Open Gov Plan or as necessary. Upon completion of the Open Gov
Plan, the Open Government Steering Committee will meet quarterly. Minutes
documenting action items and responsibilities will be produced within five working days
following each meeting and distributed to the Committee.

The Open Government Advisory Council will meet bi-weekly until the approval and
publication of the Open Gov Plan or as necessary. Upon completion of the Open Gov
Plan, the Advisory Council will meet monthly.

The Open Government Working Groups will meet weekly until the approval and
publication of the Open Gov Plan or as necessary. Upon completion of the Open Gov
Plan, the Working Groups will meet monthly. Working Group meetings are intended to
work on relevant Open Government initiatives on behalf of mission areas.

Attendance at the meetings is understood to be one of high priority, but business must
continue. If a meeting cannot be made by the primary member, it is asked that the Chair
or Senior Member of the Group be notified, and a substitute of similar qualifications be
sent in their place.

VII     DECISION-MAKING
A quorum will exist when more than half of the Open Government Steering Committee
members are present. Decisions will be by consensus of those present at each meeting.
Every effort will be made to address alternative approaches and the needs and concerns
of all members.

VIII COMMITTEES

The Open Government Steering Committee has the authority to establish standing
councils and working groups as necessary to consider items of concern to the Open
Government Steering Committee.

Membership in the Committees, Councils and Working Groups will remain in effect until
a replacement has been nominated by Mission Area Head.

IX      CHARTER REVIEW


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This Charter will be reviewed on at least an annual basis to evaluate its effectiveness and
incorporate any improvements. Changes to the Charter must be approved by a 2/3-
majority vote of the Open Government Steering Committee.



  ___________________________                          ___________________________
  Pearlie S. Reed                                      Chris L. Smith
  Assistant Secretary for Administration               Chief Information Officer




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