June 21, 2011The Honorable Darrell E. Issa, ChairmanCommittee on Oversight and Government ReformUnited States House of RepresentativesWashington, DC 20515RE: The Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2011, H.R. 2146Dear Congressman Issa:On behalf of the members of XBRL US, the nonprofit consortium for XBRL businessreporting standards, I am writing in support of your legislation, H.R. 2146, the DigitalAccountability and Transparency Act of 2011 (Data Act). This legislation, which calls forthe creation of a Financial Accountability and Spending Transparency (FAST) Board tocollect information, and requires that reporting entities submit information using acommon data standard, is an evolutionary change in the way information on federalspending is conveyed to the American public. If enacted, we believe that it will result ingreater transparency, accessibility and accuracy in government reporting, giving citizensclear, timely information about how their tax dollars are put to work.Data standards have been proven to enhance the efficiency and accuracy of reporting inmany domains.
information is disclosed is just as important as
is disclosed.The DATA Act would mandate the use of a nonproprietary data standard and it explicitlyreferences XBRL (eXtensible Business Reporting Language) which is already in use byseveral U.S. government agencies, including the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation(FDIC) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Today, thousands of banks and corporations report to these agencies in XBRL. Outside the U.S., XBRL is usedfor government reporting in the Netherlands and in Australia, for corporate reporting inChina, Japan, Israel, Korea and Israel, and for corporate tax reporting in the UK.