OMB chief describes sweeping agenda for A-76 competitions

The Bush administration will press to let agencies keep savings achieved through public-private competitions, Office of Management and Budget Director Mitch Daniels said Wednesday. Speaking before hundreds of federal procurement executives at the 2001 Federal Acquisition Conference in Washington, Daniels decried the lack of A-76 studies across government and said that agencies and individual federal workers should have incentives to perform public-private competitions. "Agencies ought to share or reap more of the [financial] benefits from public-private competitions," said Daniels, signaling that the White House is not planning to use A-76 savings to cut agency budgets. Daniels also pledged to streamline the government's outsourcing rules set out in OMB Circular A-76 and said that simplifying the public-private competition process would be "job No. 1" for Angela Styles, the administration's pick to head the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP). "We are going to do some short term touch-up work on Circular A-76," he said. Daniels did not elaborate on how A-76 would be revised, and an OMB official said that the office is still considering ways to revamp it. OMB is forming a working group of A-76 experts across agencies to determine changes, according to the official. Daniels said the administration would wait for the recommendations made by the General Accounting Office's new Commercial Activities Panel before deciding on broad changes to the government's outsourcing rules. These rules are in dire need of revision because public-private competitions are almost non-existent at civilian agencies, Daniels noted. "I'm struck by the extent to which this proven process has ground to a near halt," he said, noting that civilian agencies compete less than one-tenth of one percent of all positions classified as commercial on their Federal Activities and Inventory Reform (FAIR) Act lists. Daniels added that agencies' FAIR Act inventories are incomplete because they leave off many jobs that are not inherently governmental. Daniels cited examples of jobs that should be open to competition from the private sector, including 2,000 facility maintenance positions at the National Institutes of Health. OMB has directed agencies to submit lists of all positions considered inherently governmental with the next round of FAIR Act inventories, which are due to OMB on June 30. OMB has requested the lists to ensure the accuracy of agency FAIR Act reports. Daniels emphasized his personal interest in opening up government to competitive forces. In the early 1990s, he helped then-Indianapolis Mayor Stephen Goldsmith identify opportunities for outsourcing the city's municipal services. "The general idea that the business of government is not to provide services, but to see that [services] are provided seems self-evident to me," he said. He also reiterated President Bush's pledge to eventually open half of all positions on FAIR Act inventories to public-private competition. Tapping Styles and OFPP to oversee the administration's outsourcing agenda represents a break from the office's traditional roles, according to a former official who requested anonymity. "It's a complete departure," said the official, noting that procurement officials throughout government traditionally have not been responsible for conducting public-private competitions.
Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.