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House Committee Wants Pentagon Acquisition Policy Refreshed; Buck McKeon, Pierre Chao Comment

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Buck McKeon
Buck McKeon

The House Armed Services Committee has started work on changing how the Pentagon procures weapons and services, Reuters reported Tuesday.

Andrea Shalal-Esa writes Reps. Mac Thornberry and Adam Smith have been tapped to lead that initiative.

Rep. Buck McKeon, committee chairman, told a House hearing the House armed services panel will aim to address current issues such as cost and schedule delays in order to push that reform.

“The Congress, together with the Department of Defense and industry, must be willing to do the hard work to find root causes, look past Band-Aid fixes and parochial interests, and have the courage to implement meaningful, lasting reform,” McKeon said.

Pierre Chao
Pierre Chao

Shalal-Esa writes the Government Accountability Office has estimated the Pentagon’s weapons acquisition expenditure to reach $1.5 trillion over the coming years and the program costs to grow $411 billion.

Paul Francis, managing director of acquisition and sourcing management at GAO, and former Pentagon comptroller Dov Zakheim recommended that the tenure of Pentagon program managers be extended and acquisition rules centralized to provide incentives for contractors, Reuters reports.

“Many of the problems of the acquisition system are really the result of unintended consequences of a very byzantine and at time outright contradictory set of laws and regulations, rather than outright malice or malfeasance on the part of the people,” said Pierre Chao, senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

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