Government and People
The position of Chief Management Officer was created by the DC Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority (the Control Board) following the passage of the "National Capital Revitalization and Self-Government Improvement Act of 1997" by Congress in August 1997. The position was not provided for by the Home Rule Charter, District law, the Revitalization Bill itself, or by any other federal law. Many believe that the position of Chief Management Officer may eventually become a legally created and permanent city manager position.
The purpose of the position was to assist the Control Board in carrying out the "Management Reform Plan" specified in Subtitle B of the Revitalization bill. According to the recruitment profile for the position: "The CMO will work on behalf of the Authority to bring about management reform to the following Departments: Administrative Services, Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, Corrections, Employment Services, Fire and Emergency Medical Services, Housing and Community Development, Human Services, Public Works, and Public Health. The same effort is to be undertaken for the following four cross-cutting areas of the government of the District of Columbia: Asset Management, Information Resources Management, Personnel, and Procurement."
Ms. Barnett came to the position of Chief Management Officer after serving as the City Manager of Austin, Texas, from 1989 to 1994. There, she oversaw a workforce one third the size of the District's and a budget one fifth the District's. She resigned on January 7, 1999, and the position of Chief Management Officer was abolished.
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