H.R. 4631 would require the Government Publishing Office (GPO) to establish and maintain a website that would allow the public to obtain electronic copies of all Congressionally mandated reports. Under H.R. 4631, all executive, legislative, and judicial branch agencies would be required to provide GPO with reports required by law each year. The Library of Congress (LOC) would provide an annual report on Congressionally mandated reports.
Using information from GPO, LOC, and other agencies that produce the thousands of Congressionally mandated reports, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost about $2 million over the 2019-2023 period. CBO estimates this work would cost about $400,000 a year for four employees (two senior and two junior analysts) to ensure comprehensive compliance with the requirement to list all mandated reports. That spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated funds.
H.R. 4631 would affect direct spending by agencies not funded through annual appropriations; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply. However, CBO estimates that any net increase in spending by those agencies would be negligible. Enacting the bill would not affect revenues.
CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 4631 would not increase net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2029.
H.R. 4631 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
On March 1, 2018, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for H.R. 4631 as ordered reported by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on February 6, 2018. The two versions of the bill are very similar and CBO’s estimates of their budgetary effects are the same.