Senators Press White House to Clamp Down on 'Bridge Contracts'

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., wrote a letter seeking more information, along with Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., wrote a letter seeking more information, along with Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del. Flickr user Senator Claire McCaskill

Two Democrats on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee wrote to the White House procurement policy chief seeking clarity on Obama administration plans to strengthen oversight of so-called “bridge contracts’’—temporary extensions to sole-source contractors that auditors warn may stifle competition.

Ranking member Tom Carper, D-Del., and Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., sent a letter dated Oct. 20 to Office of Federal Procurement Policy Administrator Anne Rung, requesting a briefing following the release this week of a Government Accountability Office report. That report found that such departments as Defense, Health and Human Services and Justice use bridge contracts with “limited or no insight” into the frequency of their use for extended periods, in part because of a lack of definition of such contracts.

As early as May 2013, McCaskill raised concerns about weak oversight of departments found to be “awarding lengthy bridge contracts and following the award of the bridge contract with another sole-source contract,” she said in a statement.

“When noncompetitive contracts are used frequently or for prolonged periods,” the new letter warned, “the government is at risk of overpaying for goods and services.”

The senators want a White House briefing to their staff and clarification of plans for the procurement office to meet with the Federal Acquisition Regulation Council on the topic.

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:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download
  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care

    Download

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