Balutis negotiating IAC departure

Alan Balutis, the effective but controversial executive director of the Industry Advisory Council and its parent, the Federation of Government Information Processing Councils, is negotiating with the groups to be bought out of the remaining year of his contract.

According to several sources, the boards of IAC and FGIPC wanted Balutis to remain, but told him that he would have to curtail his outside consulting activities.

Balutis in June provided Washington Technology with a statement of his consulting activities between April and December 2001. During that time, for instance, he worked under retainer to Commerce One E-Government Solutions (now a separate company, Aquilent Inc.), Computer Sciences Corp., and SAS Institute Inc.

Some IAC members regard these activities as a conflict of interest with his responsibilities to represent the interests of all IAC members, prompting the board request.

Balutis could not be reached for comment.

The board sent Balutis a letter in late November asking him to provide a plan to remove himself from his consulting interests, sources said. Balutis told them last week that he would step down Jan. 31 if IAC and FGIPC would buy him out of his contract.

Robert Guerra, a close friend of Balutis, said Balutis has a substantial consulting practice going and he likely will work full-time on it. Guerra said Balutis will work with his new consulting firm, Guerra, Kiviat, Flyzik and Associates, but Balutis will not join the firm.

Other companies Balutis has worked for include Accenture Ltd. and RGII Technologies Inc., according to the statement provided to Washington Technology. He also has served in salaried advisory positions for two divisions of 101 Communications LLC, and sat as an unsalaried member of Sigaba Corp.'s federal advisory board.

An industry insider who knows Balutis and the two councils well said that Balutis decided to negotiate an end to his employment as a matter of principle, because the IAC and FGIPC boards were trying to renege on his contract. The executive director had an agreement in place that allowed him to perform outside consulting, the source said, and "small-minded folks [suffering from] professional jealousy" changed their minds after he accepted the agreement.

Balutis became executive director in March 2001. One of the conditions of his employment was that he be allowed to engage in outside consulting as long as it posed no conflict of interest. But some IAC members grew uncomfortable with the arrangement. Following the installation of a new IAC Board in July, the board decided that Balutis should curtail outside consulting.

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