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Elizabeth Newell Jochum

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OMB sets standards for contracting officials

November 30, 2007 The Office of Management and Budget has instituted new competency and training requirements for contracting officer technical representatives, those acquisition employees who assist with contract administration and support acquisition management. OMB's Office of Federal Procurement Policy recently issued a memorandum to chief acquisition officers delineating the requirements, which are mandatory...

Clinton asks Homeland Security IG to probe contract bonus payments

November 28, 2007 Recent reports have led a key U.S. senator to request an investigation into the Homeland Security Department's efforts to link contract award fees to performance. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., currently the front-runner for her party's presidential nomination, this week called on DHS's inspector general to look into how the department...

Report: Defense made IT purchases without competition

November 26, 2007 The Defense Department has made a significant number of purchases without proper competition or justification, a recent inspector general report concluded. The report (D2008-022) focused on Defense purchases in fiscal 2006 through two National Institutes of Health governmentwide acquisition contracts -- Electronic Commodities Store III and Chief Information Officer-Solutions and...

Real-Time Buying

November 21, 2007 For more than a decade, experts have speculated about the savings and efficiencies that could be realized if agencies set up procurement shops on the Web. But creating comprehensive, integrated e-procurement systems is neither quick nor easy. The government still has a long way to go, but many agencies are...

Agencies continue to make strides in financial management

November 19, 2007 All major agencies met financial reporting deadlines for the third year in a row, completing the audit process within 45 days of Sept. 30, the end of fiscal year, the Office of Management and Budget reported Monday. The audit results show continued improvement in financial management and accounting, OMB officials...

Report details TSA information technology management problems

November 16, 2007 The Transportation Security Administration must strengthen its management of information technology to effectively meet mission goals, a recent report from the Homeland Security Department inspector general found. According to IG Richard Skinner, the agency's IT infrastructure and management evolved too rapidly to meet congressional deadlines and public demands for increased...

Justice proposes requiring contractors to report suspected criminal violations

November 15, 2007 The Justice Department has proposed to amend the Federal Acquisition Regulation to force contractors to report potential criminal violations of federal law to agency contracting officers and inspectors general. The proposed rule, filed yesterday by the Civilian Agency Acquisition Council and the Defense Acquisition Regulation Council at Justice's request, would...

Real-Time Buying

November 15, 2007 Agencies work to link procurement with their financial and business systems. For more than a decade, experts have speculated about the savings and efficiencies that could be realized if agencies set up procurement shops on the Web. But creating comprehensive, integrated e-procurement systems is neither quick nor easy. The government...

EEOC braces for bumpy transition to in-house call center

November 12, 2007 The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is expecting service delays as it brings its nationwide call center operations back in-house over the next several months. Last week, the commission voted down a contract extension for a call center currently being run by a private firm. Designed to field discrimination claims and...

Senate passes bill to increase competition in contracting

November 9, 2007 The Senate unanimously passed legislation Thursday aimed at increasing competition and accountability in federal contracting. The Accountability in Government Contracting Act (S. 680), sponsored by Sens. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn. and Susan Collins, R-Maine, chairman and ranking member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, would limit the length of...

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