n.a United States law, originally enacted in 1980, intended primarily to reduce the information gathering burden on the public, and substantially revised in 1995 with additional provisions addressing government dissemination of information that hold implications for privacy and open governmentPlocher 1996, 41The major purposes of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (P.L. 104-13), are to: (1) Reauthorize appropriations for OIRA [the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs for six years (FY 1996-2001), at $8 million each year; (2) Strengthen OIRA agency paperwork reduction duties, including overturning Dole v. United Steelworkers, expanding agency review prior to OMB review, and setting annual reduction goals; (3) Strengthen OIRA and agency IRM [information resources management] responsibilities by refining OIRA’s policy and oversight duties and expanding agency duties-particularly with regard to the management of information technology (IT); and (4) Establish policies to promote information dissemination.Penn 1997, 9The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 should be abolished. Portions of the Act dealing with public use reporting should be incorporated into the new [National Information Administration, which should be created to replace the National Archives and Records Administration] and placed in the governmentwide records management program.SAA 2001a, 418[Office of Management and Budget] said the FY03 budget call for information would include phraseology addressing electronic records within the Paperwork Reduction Act and agencies would need to plan for those requirements.Copeland and Burrows 2009, 1The Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) (44 U.S.C. §§3501-3520) was originally enacted in 1980, and was substantively amended in 1986 and again in 1995.2 The stated purposes of the PRA include (1) minimizing the burden of federal paperwork on individuals, small businesses, state and local governments, and others; (2) ensuring the greatest public benefit from federal information; (3) coordination of federal information resources management policies; and (4) improving the quality and use of federal information.Shapiro 2013, 204The Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) is a statute that is often derided and rarely praised. Agencies forced to comply with it argue that it increases paperwork. Advocates of public health argue that it deters agencies from collecting information that will support new environmental and health regulations. Even the supporters of the statute continually point to the growing burden of information collections on the American public and a lack of compliance with the Act. All parties agree that the statute, last revised in 1995, is ill-equipped to deal with the massive changes in the ways that information can be collected and utilized in the 21st Century.SAA 2017aSAA joined with more than 60 organizations to send a letter to the Office of Management and Budget requesting that OMB “issue guidance to federal agencies, reminding them that they are required under the Paperwork Reduction Act to give public notice before removing online government information.”US DOJ 2017[The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13) significantly changes many aspects of information collection by the Federal government. The Act, which went into effect October 1, 1995, requires agencies to plan for the development of new collections of information and the extension of ongoing collections well in advance of sending proposals to the OMB [Office of Management and Budget]. By reason of the Act, agencies must: Seek public comment on proposed collections of information through “60-day notices” in the Federal Register; Certify to the OMB that efforts have been made to reduce the burden of information collection on small businesses, local government and other small entities; and Have in place a process for independent review of information collection requests prior to submission to OMB.
The Paperwork Reduction Act (1980, 1986, and 1995) has been criticized within the records management literature for lawmakers’ failure to embrace records management principles and to understand current recordkeeping practices. A provision in the 1995 reauthorization stating that government agencies shall “provide adequate notice when initiating, substantially modifying, or terminating significant information dissemination products” was referenced in a February 2017 open letter to the Office of Management and Budget. Signed by 71 organizations including the Society of American Archivists, the letter was in response to concerns that government agencies were removing vital information from their websites without adequate public notice. Although confusing to many people, the Government Paperwork Elimination Act (GPEA) and the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) are not synonymous. The focus of the PRA is to limit the information the federal government collects from the public in any form. The focus of the GPEA is to promote the doing of business electronically, with the public and otherwise.