Office of Management and Budget

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Office of Management and Budget
Agency overview
FormedJuly 1, 1970; 50 years ago (1970-07-01)
Preceding agency
  • Bureau of the Budget
Headquarters Eisenhower Executive Office Building
Employees529 [1]
Annual budget$92.8 million (FY 2011)
Agency executives
Parent agency Executive Office of the President of the United States
Child agencies
Website Office of Management and Budget

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is the largest office within the Executive Office of the President of the United States (EOP). OMB's most prominent function is to produce the president's budget, [2] but it also examines agency programs, policies, and procedures to see whether they comply with the president's policies and coordinates inter-agency policy initiatives.

The OMB director reports to the president, vice president and the White House chief of staff.[ citation needed] The current OMB Director is Russell Vought. On November 29, 2020, President-elect Joe Biden announced that he would nominate Neera Tanden as the next OMB director, subject to Senate approval. [3] [4]


The Bureau of the Budget, OMB's predecessor, was established in 1921 as a part of the Department of the Treasury by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921, which President Warren G. Harding signed into law. The Bureau of the Budget was moved to the Executive Office of the President in 1939 and was run by Harold D. Smith during the government's rapid expansion of spending during World War II. James L. Sundquist, a staffer at the Bureau of the Budget, called the relationship between the president and the bureau extremely close and subsequent bureau directors politicians, not public administrators. [5]

The bureau was reorganized into the Office of Management and Budget in 1970 during the Nixon administration. [6] The first OMB included Roy Ash (head), Paul O'Neill (assistant director), Fred Malek (deputy director), Frank Zarb (associate director) and two dozen others.

In the 1990s, OMB was reorganized to remove the distinction between management staff and budgetary staff by combining the dual roles into each given program examiner within the Resource Management Offices. [7]


OMB prepares the president's budget proposal to Congress and supervises the administration of the executive branch agencies. It evaluates the effectiveness of agency programs, policies, and procedures, assesses competing funding demands among agencies, and sets funding priorities. OMB ensures that agency reports, rules, testimony, and proposed legislation are consistent with the president's budget and administration policies.

OMB also oversees and coordinates the administration's procurement, financial management, information, and regulatory policies. In each of these areas, OMB's role is to help improve administrative management, develop better performance measures and coordinating mechanisms, and reduce unnecessary burdens on the public.

OMB's critical missions are: [8]

  1. Budget development and execution, a prominent government-wide process managed from the Executive Office of the President (EOP) and a device by which a president implements their policies, priorities, and actions in everything from the Department of Defense to NASA.
  2. Managing other agencies' financials, paperwork, and IT.



OMB is made up mainly of career appointed staff who provide continuity across changes of party and administration in the White House. Six positions within OMB—the Director, the Deputy Director, the Deputy Director for Management, and the administrators of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, and the Office of Federal Financial Management—are presidentially appointed and Senate- confirmed positions.

OMB's largest components are the five Resource Management Offices, which are organized along functional lines mirroring the federal government, each led by an OMB associate director. Approximately half of all OMB staff are assigned to these offices, the majority of whom are designated as program examiners. Program examiners can be assigned to monitor one or more federal agencies or may be deployed by a topical area, such as monitoring issues relating to U.S. Navy warships. These staff have dual responsibility for both management and budgetary issues, as well as for giving expert advice on all aspects relating to their programs. Each year they review federal agency budget requests and help decide what resource requests will be sent to Congress as part of the president's budget. They perform in-depth program evaluations with the Program Assessment Rating Tool, review proposed regulations and agency testimony, analyze pending legislation, and oversee the aspects of the president's management agenda including agency management scorecards. They are often called upon to provide analysis information to EOP staff. They also provide important information to those assigned to the statutory offices within OMB: the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, the Office of Federal Financial Management, and the Office of E-Government & Information Technology, which specializes in issues such as federal regulations and procurement policy and law.

Other components are OMB-wide support offices, including the Office of General Counsel, the Office of Legislative Affairs, the Budget Review Division (BRD), and the Legislative Reference Division. The BRD performs government-wide budget coordination and is largely responsible for the technical aspects relating to the release of the president's budget each February. With respect to the estimation of spending for the executive branch, the BRD serves a purpose parallel to that of the Congressional Budget Office (which was created in response to the OMB) for estimating Congressional spending, the Department of the Treasury for estimating executive branch revenue, and the Joint Committee on Taxation for estimating Congressional revenue.

The Legislative Reference Division is the federal government's central clearing house for proposed legislation or testimony by federal officials. It distributes proposed legislation and testimony to all relevant federal reviewers and distills the comments into a consensus opinion of the administration about the proposal. It is also responsible for writing an Enrolled Bill Memorandum to the president once a bill is presented by both chambers of Congress for the president's signature. The Enrolled Bill Memorandum details the bill's particulars, opinions on the bill from relevant federal departments, and an overall opinion about whether it should be signed into law or vetoed. It also issues Statements of Administration Policy that let Congress know the White House's official position on proposed legislation.

Role in the executive budget process

In practice, the president has assigned the OMB certain responsibilities when it comes to the budget and hiring authorities who play key roles in developing it. OMB coordinates the development of the president’s budget proposal by issuing circulars, memoranda, and guidance documents to the heads of executive agencies. The OMB works very closely with executive agencies in making sure the budget process and proposal is smooth. [9]

The development of the budget within the executive branch has many steps and takes nearly a year to complete. The first step is the OMB informing the president of the country's economic situation. The next step is known as the Spring Guidance: the OMB gives executive agencies instructions on policy guidance to use when coming up with their budget requests along with due dates for them to submit their requests. The OMB then works with the agencies to discuss issues in the upcoming budget. In July, the OMB issues circular A-11 to all agencies, which outlines instructions for submitting the budget proposals, which the agencies submit by September. The fiscal year begins October 1 and OMB staff meet with senior agency representatives to find out whether their proposals are in line with the president’s priorities and policies and identify constraints within the budget proposal until late November. The OMB director then meets with the president and EOP advisors to discuss the agencies' budget proposals and recommends a federal budget proposal, and the agencies are notified of the decisions about their requests. They can appeal to OMB and the president in December if they are dissatisfied with the decisions. After working together to resolve issues, agencies and OMB prepare a budget justification document to present to relevant congressional committees, especially the Appropriations Committee. Finally, by the first Monday in February, the president must review and submit the final budget to Congress to approve. [10]

OMB is also responsible for the preparation of Statements of Administrative Policy (SAPs) with the president. These statements allow the OMB to communicate the president's and agencies' policies to the government as a whole and set forth policymakers' agendas. [10] During the review of the federal budget, interest groups can lobby for policy change and affect the budget for the new year. [11] OMB plays a key role in policy conflicts by making sure legislation and agencies' actions are consistent with the executive branch's. OMB has a powerful and influential role in the government, basically making sure its day-to-day operations run. Without a budget, federal employees could not be paid, federal buildings could not open and federal programs would come to a halt in a government shutdown. Shutdowns can occur when Congress refuses to accept a budget. [11]


Current appointees

List of directors

Name [13] Dates served [13] President Notes
Charles G. Dawes June 23, 1921 – June 30, 1922 Warren G. Harding Dawes would later become Vice President of the United States under Calvin Coolidge and the U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom under Herbert Hoover
Herbert M. Lord July 1, 1922 – May 31, 1929 Warren G. Harding
Calvin Coolidge
Herbert Hoover
J. Clawson Roop August 15, 1929 – March 3, 1933 Herbert Hoover
Lewis W. Douglas March 7, 1933 – August 31, 1934 Franklin D. Roosevelt
Daniel W. Bell September 1, 1934 – April 14, 1939
Harold D. Smith April 15, 1939 – June 19, 1946 Franklin D. Roosevelt
Harry S. Truman
James E. Webb July 13, 1946 – January 27, 1949 Harry S. Truman Webb later became the second administrator of NASA under presidents Kennedy and Johnson
Frank Pace, Jr. February 1, 1949 – April 12, 1950
Frederick J. Lawton April 13, 1950 – January 21, 1953
Joseph M. Dodge January 22, 1953 – April 15, 1954 Dwight D. Eisenhower
Rowland R. Hughes April 16, 1954 – April 1, 1956
Percival F. Brundage April 2, 1956 – March 17, 1958
Maurice H. Stans March 18, 1958 – January 21, 1961
David E. Bell January 22, 1961 – December 20, 1962 John F. Kennedy
Kermit Gordon December 28, 1962 – June 1, 1965 John F. Kennedy
Lyndon B. Johnson
Charles L. Schultze June 1, 1965 – January 28, 1968 Lyndon B. Johnson Schultze later served as Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under president Jimmy Carter.
Charles J. Zwick January 29, 1968 – January 21, 1969
Robert P. Mayo January 22, 1969 – June 30, 1970 Richard Nixon
George P. Shultz July 1, 1970 – June 11, 1972 Shultz had previously served president Nixon as Secretary of Labor and would later serve under him as Secretary of the Treasury and under Ronald Reagan as Secretary of State.
Caspar W. Weinberger June 12, 1972 – February 1, 1973 Weinberger later served as Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare under presidents Nixon and Ford, and as Secretary of Defense under president Reagan
Roy L. Ash February 2, 1973 – February 3, 1975 Richard Nixon
Gerald Ford
James T. Lynn February 10, 1975 – January 20, 1977 Gerald Ford Lynn left to head Aetna Insurance
Bert Lance January 21, 1977 – September 23, 1977 Jimmy Carter Lance resigned amid a corruption scandal
James T. McIntyre September 24, 1977 – January 20, 1981
David A. Stockman January 21, 1981 – August 1, 1985 Ronald Reagan
James C. Miller III October 8, 1985 – October 15, 1988
Joseph R. Wright, Jr. October 16, 1988 – January 20, 1989
Richard G. Darman January 25, 1989 – January 20, 1993 George H. W. Bush
Leon E. Panetta January 21, 1993 – October 1994 Bill Clinton Panetta became president Clinton's Chief of Staff and served under president Obama as the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and later as Secretary of Defense
Alice M. Rivlin October 17, 1994 – April 26, 1996 Rivlin became a governor of the Federal Reserve after leaving OMB
Franklin D. Raines September 13, 1996 – May 21, 1998 Raines became CEO of Fannie Mae
Jack Lew May 21, 1998 – January 19, 2001 Jacob Lew served as deputy director of OMB from 1995 to 1998 and would serve as director again under Obama from 2010 to 2012
Mitch Daniels January 23, 2001 – June 6, 2003 George W. Bush Daniels left and successfully ran for governor of Indiana
Joshua B. Bolten June 26, 2003 – April 15, 2006 Bolten became president Bush's Chief of Staff
Rob Portman May 26, 2006 – June 19, 2007 Portman had previously served president Bush as United States Trade Representative and was elected to the U.S. Senate from Ohio in 2010.
Jim Nussle September 4, 2007 – January 20, 2009
Peter R. Orszag January 20, 2009 – July 30, 2010 Barack Obama Orszag went to Citigroup as a Vice Chairman after resigning and is now CEO of Financial Advisory at Lazard
Jeffrey Zients July 30, 2010 – November 18, 2010 Acting Director during remainder of Orszag's term
Jack Lew November 18, 2010 – January 27, 2012 Previously served under Clinton from 1998 to 2001. Resigned to become Chief of Staff, and later Secretary of the Treasury
Jeffrey Zients January 27, 2012 – April 24, 2013 Acting Director during remainder of Lew's term
Sylvia Mathews Burwell April 24, 2013 – June 9, 2014 Former deputy director of OMB under president Clinton. Resigned to become the Secretary of Health and Human Services
Brian Deese June 9, 2014 – July 28, 2014 Acting Director after Burwell resigned.
Shaun Donovan July 28, 2014 – January 20, 2017 Former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama.
Mark Sandy January 20, 2017 – February 16, 2017 Donald Trump
Mick Mulvaney February 16, 2017 – March 31, 2020 Previously served as the U.S. Representative for South Carolina's 5th congressional district from 2011 to 2017. Became Acting White House Chief of Staff on January 2, 2019, but remained as OMB Director. [14] [15]
Russell Vought January 2, 2019 – present Acting Director during Mulvaney's service as Acting White House Chief of Staff from January 2, 2019 – March 31, 2020. [14] [15] Confirmed by the Senate on July 20, 2020; [16] sworn in two days later.

See also


  1. ^ "FedScope". Office of Management and Budget. Archived from the original on 16 October 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
  2. ^ "The Mission and Structure of the Office of Management and Budget".
  3. ^ "Biden hires all-female senior communications team, names Neera Tanden director of OMB". Retrieved 2020-11-30.
  4. ^ Zhao, Christina (2020-11-30). "Neera Tanden's stinging criticism of Republican senators may hurt confirmation chances". Newsweek. Retrieved 2020-11-30.
  5. ^ Oral History Interview with James L. Sundquist, Washington, D.C., July 15, 1963, by Charles T. Morrissey,
  6. ^ "84 Stat. 2085" (PDF). Retrieved 2020-10-20.
  7. ^ "OMB Organization Chart" (PDF). Office of Management and Budget.
  8. ^ Organization Mission at archive of OMB site}
  9. ^ 1951-, Berman, Larry (2015-03-08). The Office of Management and Budget and the presidency, 1921-1979. Princeton, New Jersey. ISBN  9781400867288. OCLC  905862779.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list ( link)
  10. ^ a b Shambaugwh IV, Weinstein Jr., George E., Paul J (2016). The Art of Policymaking. Thousand Oaks, California: CQ Press. pp. 109–113. ISBN  978-0321081032.
  11. ^ a b Haeder, Simon F.; Yackee, Susan Webb (August 2015). "Influence and the Administrative Process: Lobbying the U.S. President's Office of Management and Budget". American Political Science Review. 109 (3): 507–522. doi: 10.1017/S0003055415000246. ISSN  0003-0554.
  12. ^ "After 2 years, OMB still lacks permanent controller and that's a problem". Federal News Network. 2019-04-01. Retrieved 2019-11-12.
  13. ^ a b "Directors of The Office of Management and Budget and The Bureau of the Budget". Office of Management and Budget(Archived). Retrieved 18 October 2009.
  14. ^ a b Cook, Nancy. "Mulvaney eggs Trump on in shutdown fight". POLITICO. Retrieved 2019-11-12.
  15. ^ a b "Budget Head Mulvaney Picked as Trump's Acting Chief of Staff | RealClearPolitics". Retrieved 2019-11-12.
  16. ^ Emma, Caitlin (July 20, 2020). "Senate confirms Russ Vought to be White House budget chief". Politico. Retrieved July 22, 2020.

External links