Defense bill brings insights to insourcing

In the future, federal officials may have to explain their reasons for taking work from a small business and insourcing it to government employees.

The House Armed Services Committee approved the fiscal 2013 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4310) May 10, which includes the explanation provision.

The provision would require officials to publicize documents that describe the methodologies and procedures they used to make decisions on whether to take away work from a small company and give it to a federal employee to do.

More specifically, officials would have to show which contracts they studied for potential conversion from the private sector to the public sector. They would have to describe how contracts were evaluated to be a potentially critical function or an inherently governmental function, which is a job that only a government employee is allowed to do. Officials also would have to explain the ways they estimated and compared costs, a point of contention between the government and private sector.

However, according to the bill, the provision applies to departments and agencies except the Defense Department.

The House has not passed the authorization bill.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

Reader Comments

Tue, May 15, 2012

Why wouldn't it apply to DoD?? This bill makes sense for both contractors and the government, as the numbers behind the decision should be public.

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