Senate committee seeks GSA reorg sign-off

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"F Street shuffle"

Attempts by House lawmakers and the Bush administration to reorganize the General Services Administration's acquisition services is coming under fire by Senate appropriators.

The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the spending bill today. The bill itself prohibits GSA from reorganizing its structure without approval by the House and Senate appropriations committees.

The GSA's proposal to combine its two existing acquisition services into a single Federal Acquisition Service “could result in the over-centralization of authority in the GSA headquarters while minimizing local decision making and input,” states the report accompanying the Transportation, Treasury, the Judiciary, House and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2006.

GSA officials released last month a proposed draft proposal to consolidate the Federal Technology Service and Federal Supply Service. The agency’s proposal came after months of pressure by Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) and following House approval of a more stringent reorganization bill proposed by Davis.

Davis has criticized the GSA plan for not centralizing authority enough in the central GSA office. Senators, however, appear to disagree. “The committee believes GSA works best when it works collectively with a strong field staff,” the report states. “Limiting the number of regional executives will limit GSA’s flexibility and ability to meet local needs and requirements.”

About the Author

David Perera is a special contributor to Defense Systems.

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