FCW Forum: Are IGs out of control?
Inspectors general are overstepping their bounds in federal contracting, virtually supplanting agency program managers, according to Paul Denett, administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy
The IGs should seek out waste, fraud and abuse, “but when they become so dominant that program managers and contracting officers are reluctant to exercise what they believe is their best business judgment…that’s not healthy,” said Denett, speaking last week at a conference sponsored by the Coalition for Government Procurement (read the complete article here).
We received a letter to the editor from one reader who is thinking along the same lines. The fact that the Defense Department's IG is willing to punish "sensible decisions that just do not agree with his own" reflects the extent to which "IGs have taken over the lead role in setting procurement policy," the reader argues. You can read the full letter here.
That person was not referring to our report of Denett's comments, but to an article about a recent report from the DOD IG and a response from the General Services Administration. The DOD IG had criticized Air Force contracting officers for wasting by getting GSA's help with task orders placed through an Air Force contract.
GSA, understandably, was not pleased.
“Frankly I take great offense at that.... I don’t appreciate it, and I think they got it dead wrong,” Jim Williams, commissioner of GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service, said in a speech at a conference hosted by the Coalition for Government Procurement (read more here).
Are IGs really overstepping their authority? Let us know what you think. Post a comment (registration required) or send it by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org (subject line: Blog comment) and we'll post it for you.
Posted on Nov 12, 2007 at 12:12 PM