June 04, 2009
Michael Victorian
(202) 639-6405

AFGE Takes Its Contracting Out Reform Campaign to the House of Representatives

(WASHINGTON) - The American Federation of Government Employees, today, applauded Representative John Sarbanes (D-MD) for introducing the much anticipated CLEAN UP Act and more than fifty of his colleagues in the House of Representatives who have signed on as original cosponsors of this important contracting out reform legislation.

“The CLEAN UP Act is vital to any serious effort to save taxpayer dollars and restore integrity to the federal procurement process,” said John Gage, AFGE national president. “The bill calls on the Obama administration to correct problems in the Office of Management and Budget’s privatization process that have been identified by the Government Accountability Office, the Department of Defense Inspector General, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-MO), and others, before again using the A-76 circular,” added Gage.

The Correction of Longstanding Errors in Agencies’ Unsustainable Procurements (CLEAN UP) Act builds on provisions signed into law as part of the fiscal year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act, which indefinitely suspended A-76 privatization studies and requires federal agencies to implement in-sourcing policies for new work and work that was improperly outsourced.

Specifically, The CLEAN UP (Correction of Longstanding Errors in Agencies Unsustainable Procurements) Act would:

  1. establish overarching principles to govern sourcing, which would ensure that inherently governmental, closely associated with inherently governmental, and mission-essential functions are performed by reliable and experienced federal employees, while allowing other functions to shift between federal employees and contractors, depending on which is more efficient and effective, consistent with agency needs and any competition requirements;

  2. encourage agencies to insource new functions in order to avoid sole-source and limited competition contracts;

  3. ensure that agencies incrementally insourcing inherently governmental, closely associated with inherently governmental, and mission-essential functions that have been wrongly contracted out;

  4. require that all agencies establish inventories of their service contracts, in part, so that contracts that are poorly performing or are appropriate for insourcing can be quickly identified;

  5. ensure that agencies identify where they are now or will later experience shortages of federal employees;

  6. establish internal business process reengineering as an alternative to the costly and controversial OMB Circular A-76 privatization process;

  7. recommend that critically needed reforms to the A-76 process finally be undertaken; and

  8. suspend all use of the A-76 process until the reforms required by The CLEAN UP Act have been substantially implemented.

AFGE worked with Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), who introduced similar legislation in the Senate this spring.

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