Feds offer ideas on how to SAVE for the future

Friday - 8/6/2010, 10:49am EDT

Kenneth Baer, Associate Director for Strategic Planning and Communications, OMB

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By Suzanne Kubota
Senior Internet Editor
FederalNewsRadio.com

The Office of Management and Budget gears up to choose a winner in a contest that could save money for government. We're talking about the SAVE award.

The awards, according to Kenneth Baer is Associate Director for Strategic Planning and Communications at the Office of Management and Budget, let feds across government to offer up their best ideas on how we can save money while making government more efficient.

He told Federal News Radio, "it comes from a belief the President has which is almost always the best ideas come from the front lines. The people who are out there doing the work and who are, in almost all cases, far outside the beltway and are interacting with Americans and they really have the real-life experiences to tell us where we can be delivering better services at a better price."

Baer said more than 18,000 ideas were submitted this year, compared to 38,000 last year, but there's a big difference about the way the process works this year that might account for that.

This year feds could vote, up or down, on the ideas and make comments. Baer said this probably eliminated duplicate or similar ideas from being submitted.

Over 164,000 votes have been cast and more than 13,000 comments were made.

Now, the challenge will be to cull the ideas down.

So what we're going to do is take roughly the top half of the ideas that got votes... then put them through a screen through the OMB staff who are the experts in the individual areas and departments and then from there, there's a rating system that goes through what they do.

And then down it will be narrowed down further to a final four.

OMB plans to announce a winner in September, but you can see the ideas for yourself in the meantime by clicking here.