Committee approves competitive sourcing caps

H.R. 2361: Department of the Interior, environment, and related agencies for fiscal 2006

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Congressional limitations on the amount of money the Interior Department and the Forest Service can spend on competitive sourcing may continue in the next fiscal year.

The House Appropriations Committee's Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Subcommittee voted last week to continue its practice of placing cost limits on competitive-sourcing expenses. The full House is expected to finish voting on the bill this week.

Interior's competitive sourcing would be limited to $3.45 million in fiscal 2006 according to the House subcommittee's language, while the Forest Service would be capped at $2.5 million. Each amount is an increase over fiscal 2005 levels of $3.25 million and $2 million, respectively. The corresponding Senate Appropriations Committee subcommittee has yet to mark up its fiscal 2006 spending bill.

In its report accompanying the subcommittee mark up, House subcommittee lawmakers said Forest Service officials have mismanaged competitive sourcing in the past.

Competitive sourcing, part of the President's Management Agenda, encourages agency officials to cut costs by forcing federal employees whose jobs are not deemed to be inherently governmental to compete against private-sector bids for the same work.

About the Author

David Perera is a special contributor to Defense Systems.

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