Recovery Board Offers Automated Data Change Tool

May 5, 2011 | By Jerry Ashworth | Post a Comment

Recipients of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act awards now can submit information to correct certain errors in previous quarterly reports through a new electronic data change tool developed by the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board.

Carrie Hug, assistant director of data for the Recovery Board told attendees at the National Grants Management Association’s Annual Training Conference in Hershey, Pa., that the process for correcting errors to Recovery Act information in the past was time-consuming. Recipient requests to correct errors would first go to the federal agency, which would send the change request to the Office of Management and Budget through spreadsheets. The OMB then would send it to the Recovery Board, which would enter requests that its database would accept. Anything rejected would be sent back to the OMB, then to the agency. “It got very difficult to determine which records had been fixed and which had not,” Hug said. “It also got difficult to find out where it was getting stalled.”

Hug said the Recovery Board spent more than six months developing a new automated data change tool, which was launched April 1, that would allow the recipient to request the change electronically. With the new tool, recipients can identify errors and submit change request that are reviewed and evaluated prior to being published on Recovery.gov. The process, which can be accessed through FederalReporting.gov, allows the recipients to see when the change was processed, if the agency has denied it or if it is still pending. The tool allows changes only to existing reports (i.e., reports prior to the current reporting quarter).

Changes that can be requested using the tool include those allowed previously such as changes to deactivate reports, link reports and mark reports as “final.” It also sets up a new category called “other,” which includes requested changes to data elements other than job numbers.’

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