DEA Faulted on Its Reports; IG Says Work Not Quantified

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Efforts by the Drug Enforcement Administration to target, disrupt and dismantle global drug-trafficking organizations cannot be measured and, as a result, it remains unclear whether the agency is adequately achieving its drug enforcement goals and objectives, a report said yesterday.

The Justice Department's Office of Inspector General said the DEA had failed to meet key aspects of the government's new performance-reporting guidelines, which focus on results instead of procedure, and that the agency's strategic objectives were "not quantitative, directly measurable or assessment-based."

The report said that while the DEA established performance indicators, the agency had not created specific criteria for its field divisions to designate organizations as "priority targets," a key element of its strategic goal, and had no specific criteria for reporting on priority targets that had been disrupted or dismantled.

It also said the DEA did not have an effective system to collect, analyze and report data for all of its performance indicators; lacked accurate performance data for one of the five field divisions included in the review; and had failed to create "reasonable realistic performance goals."

In response to the investigation, the DEA said it is updating its strategic plan and that the new strategy will address the shortcomings listed in the report. …