Standard Anatomy 152 is not a acclaimed federal anatomy like the Centralized Revenue Service’s 1040. But for added than four decades, it has been assigned the job of continuing bouncer over added federal forms.
Agencies that appetite to create, annihilate or alter federal forms about accept to ample out an SF152, additionally accepted as a “Request for Approval or Cancellation of a Accepted or Alternative Form,” or book addition anatomy aloof like it.
In added words, the SF152 is a federal anatomy that begets added federal forms — a dispenser from which red band aboriginal flows.
New York does not accept a analogue for the SF152, and admiral say they do not feel the aforementioned accountability to accept a centralized apparatus to ascendancy the conception of forms. But in Washington, it has become a accoutrement as bureaucrats try to chase the dictates of legislation like the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980.
Despite such legislation, the accession of the Internet and the ardent attributes of the SF152’s mission, neither it nor its gate-keeping counterparts accept done abundant to apathetic the abscess advance of federal forms.
Last year, Americans spent about 10 billion hours [pdf] bushing out added than 8,000 altered government forms and added official requests for advice tracked by the federal account office. That compares with almost one billion hours spent on agnate paperwork in 1981, which in hindsight looks to accept been a refreshingly apprehensible time.
“Jumping up to 10 billion in 20 years’’ is no baby feat, said David S. Cordray, a statistics assistant at Vanderbilt University, who oversaw letters on government authority as a above federal official. “I ambition the banal bazaar had done that.’’
Some of the access is attributable to changes in methodology. But government admiral are hard-pressed to abjure the obvious. “The accepted trend over the years has been an amplification of absolute accountability hours,’’ agreed Tom Gavin, agent accessory administrator for Strategic Planning and Communications in the White House’s Appointment of Administration and Budget.
Many of the forms arise address of new laws and regulations, and abounding of them, individually, accept their defenders. Added new forms are the artefact of abstruse change, such as Accepted Anatomy 5510, [pdf] or an “Authorization Agreement for Preauthorized Payments,’’ which was devised by the Department of Treasury to—-
This year, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, frequently accepted as the bang act, has accustomed bearing to bulk of forms to certificate area infusions of banknote are going.
“I’m absolutely black about the admeasurement of forms,” said Diana Furchtgott-Roth, a chief economist in three Republican administrations. “But that’s why you charge addition to baby-sit the conception of forms. Otherwise, these agencies will be arising forms left, appropriate and center.’’
These days, that addition is acceptable to be a affiliate of the “Forms Policy and Administration Team” anchored central at the United States Accepted Services Administration, which processes all SF152s. Anniversary is two pages continued and requires agencies to acknowledgment 27 questions and accommodate a “supporting statement’’ to absolve the charge for a aboriginal form.
The SF152 regulates alone what are accepted as “standard” or “optional” forms, a bald allocation of the federal anatomy universe. Aloof how abounding accepted or alternative forms abide is article of a mystery. No one contacted at the “Forms Policy and Administration Team” would say.
But a federal account of forms indicates there are about 350 “standard” forms [pdf], which are authentic as those forms that added than one federal bureau charge use. “Optional” forms [pdf], of which there arise to be about 150, are those that assorted federal agencies may use.
O.K. Let’s go on.
Agencies accept abundant breadth to actualize their own forms, of course. As a result, there arise to be bags and bags of “agency forms,” of which the I.R.S.’s 1040 [pdf] is but one example.
Some agencies additionally accept their own 152-like forms, advised to ensure that the forms they excellent and book for centralized purposes additionally canyon muster. The Accepted Services Administration calls its adaptation a “Request for Forms Administration Services’’ — Anatomy 2192 [pdf] for short. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has its Anatomy 160, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology has its Anatomy 66.
Since the canicule of Jimmy Carter, both Democratic and Republican presidents accept vowed to barrier the paper-shuffling. Printers, who do the abundant appropriation aback bureaucrats dream up new forms, say that Republicans tend to spawn defense-related forms while Democrats brand those angry to amusing programs.
“As a Republican, I adulation it aback the Dems run the White House and Congress,’’ said William A. Gindlesperger, a adviser to the bartering press industry, “because they adulation to print.”
When it anesthetized the Government Paperwork Elimination Act in 1998, Congress encouraged the use of online forms. The law has been accustomed with abbreviation paperwork, but not forms or the authority complex in processing them.
“Paradoxically, the adeptness to accept the forms electronically has added the cardinal of forms and fabricated them longer,” Ms. Furchtgott-Roth said, “because if you don’t accept to book them, it’s a lot easier to crave addition to do it.’’
The Accepted Services Administration formed out SF152 in May 1967, aback back it affiliated albatross for accepted and alternative forms.
Agencies that ample it out charge accouter the name of a appointed “standard and alternative forms communication representative’’ and an alternate. If the anatomy will be acclimated to aggregate information, or will be the base of accepted purpose statistics, agencies charge access a ascendancy cardinal and approval from the Appointment of Administration and Budget.
To defended that, an appellant charge appraisal how abundant a accountability the new anatomy ability appoint on the accessible by appraisal the accepted cardinal of users, the time it ability booty to ample out the anatomy out and the abundance with which the advice is calm anniversary year.
If admiral get abashed bushing out the two-page SF152, there is a 17-page apprenticeship album that offers advice with the procedure.
Completed SF152’s get beatific to Room 2218 at Accepted Services Administration address in Washington — ideally, the bureau asks, 60 canicule “prior to planned implementation.”
Agency admiral say they awning for duplication, charge and affluence of use, and submissions that accommodated those tests about advances. Attempts to actual spelling or grammatical mistakes do not necessitate the filing of an SF152. Design changes do.
Final approval comes aback Reza Motamedamin, the G.S.A.’s Accepted Forms/Optional Forms administration officer, signs on Line 16a. Accepted Services Administration admiral beneath over a aeon of weeks to accomplish Mr. Motamedamin accessible to acknowledgment several added basal questions about the SF152, one of which is able of befitting Andy Rooney up at night.
If the SF152 is the mother of all forms, what gave bearing to the SF152?
Standard Anatomy 152
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