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3:58 pm, January 29, 2015

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Joe Petrillo, Procurement Attorney, Petrillo & Powell PLLC

Contracting officers have a lot of authority when it comes to deciding who wins federal contracts, but they don't have unlimited discretion. That's what the contracting officer who awarded a deal to USIS found out. In a sustaining protest, the Government Accountability Office says the contracting officer should have paid more attention to allegations of fraud against the company. In this week's Legal Loop segment, Procurement Attorney Joe Petrillo joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to discuss this case.

Tags: Joe Petrillo , Federal Drive , Tom Temin , Petrillo and Powell , Contracting officers , USIS , contracting , acquisition

Thursday - 11/06/2014, 08:38am EST
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Increasing building security may be a problem for FPS, GAO says

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson has said he wants to increase security at federal buildings. But the FPS, the agency responsible for doing so, may not be up to the task. GAO's Mark Goldstein said the FPS has a number of long-standing problems to solve before it can adequately protect anyone.

Tags: building security , workforce , DHS , FPS , Mark Goldstein , federal buildings , Federal Drive , Tom Temin , Jeh Johnson , Matt Wingfield , management , contracting

Wednesday - 11/05/2014, 02:46pm EST
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Mark Goldstein, Director of Physical Infrastructure Issues, GAO

After a gunman opened fire at Canada's National War Memorial and Parliament, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said he wants to beef up security at federal buildings. But as Mark Goldstein, GAO's director of physical infrastructure issues, explained on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin, more security means a greater workload for the Federal Protective Service. Reports from the Government Accountability Office show the small agency isn't always prepared for new threats.

Tags: Federal Drive , Tom Temin , Mark Goldstein , building security , DHS , federal buildings , Federal Protective Service , workforce

Tuesday - 11/04/2014, 08:36am EST
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GAO: OMB program inventory needs work to detect duplicative programs

The Government Accountability Office recommends that the Office of Management and Budget revise its guidance to agencies in order to collect better data for its governmentwide program inventory, which is meant to cut down on overlaps in program services.

Tags: OMB , GPRA Modernization Act , program duplication , database management , duplicative programs

Monday - 11/03/2014, 11:45am EST
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Anne-Marie Fennell, Natural Resources Director, GAO

The total price for professional services contracts at the Agriculture Department is about $2 billion over the last four years. The Office of Management and Budget says those types of contracts can be very risky for you to use. Anne-Marie Fennell is Director of Natural Resources and Environment Issues at the Government Accountability Office. On In Depth with Francis Rose, she said with risk factors in mind, USDA needs to strengthen its oversight of professional services contracts.

Tags: Anne-Marie Fennell , USDA , In Depth

Monday - 11/03/2014, 04:22pm EST
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Rob Burton, partner, Venable

The list of business grievances against the contracting company USIS is growing. The Government Accountability Offices says a five-year, nearly $200 million contract it has with the Homeland Security Department wasn't properly awarded. GAO cites in its decision a recent service history of contracting turbulence as grounds for further review, which includes thousands of incomplete background checks and a massive data breach that affected the Office of Personnel Management. Rob Burton is a partner at Venable law firm. He's also former administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy. On In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu, he weighed the chances that debarment is in USIS's future.

Tags: Rob Burton , Venable , USIS , contracting , industry , In Depth

Tuesday - 10/28/2014, 04:38pm EDT
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Chris Mihm, Managing Director for Strategic Issues, GAO

Five out of five federal agencies fall short in meeting the customer service improvements Congress said it wanted to see four years ago. The Government Accountability Office looked at selected quintet of agencies to see if they have all the key elements necessary for high-quality customer service. GAO says all five are missing at least one critical piece of that puzzle. Chris Mihm is Managing Director for Strategic Issues at GAO. On In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu, he broke down what each agency needs to improve their customer service scores.

Tags: Chris Mihm , In Depth

Monday - 10/27/2014, 04:34pm EDT
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Chris Mihm, Government Accountability Office

In a study destined to produce big headlines, the Government Accountability Office finds thousands of federal employees are taking prolonged periods of administrative leave. In the past three years, more than 50,000 employees were on paid leave for up to three months. But for most federal employees, paid time off amounts to about a day per year. Chris Mihm, managing director for Strategic Issues at GAO, joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to discuss what they found.

Tags: Chris Mihm , Tom Temin , administrative leave , Federal Drive

Friday - 10/24/2014, 10:00am EDT
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GAO sustains protest of DHS contract to USIS

The Government Accountability Office says the Citizenship and Immigration Services directorate should reevaluate USIS to determine if it's indeed a responsible contractor in light of allegations of defrauding the government and an investigation by the Justice Department on those charges.

Tags: acquisition , contracting , bid protest , Ralph White , DHS , FCI Federal , USIS , Jason Miller

Tuesday - 10/21/2014, 03:58am EDT

GOP to agencies: Why do you pay employees not to work?

Congressional Republicans probe for answers following a GAO report that the government spent nearly $3.1 billion in paid administrative leave over a recent 3-year period. While most employees took such leave for a week or less, 263 spent a year or longer on paid administrative leave.

Tags: Chuck Grassley , Darrell Issa , paid leave , Emily Kopp

Tuesday - 10/21/2014, 03:12pm EDT
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