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The proliferation of multiple award contracts across the government has reached a tipping point. The Office of Federal Procurement Policy is on a listening tour to figure out how to tame this unwieldy beast. The administration's efforts come as several agencies plan to recompete or issue new procurements for MACs in the coming year. Federal News Radio's Jason Miller explores all sides of this complex issue in our series, Contract Overload.
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What is the cost to industry to continually bid on these contracts? How do these costs get passed to agencies? Why do agencies believe they need their own MACs instead of using contracts provided by the General Services Administration, or other government-wide acquisition contracts? And, what, if anything, can OFPP do to reel in the explosion in redundant contracts?
DHS and VA say they need their own multiple award contracts because they want vendors who are familiar with their processes and requirements. Others say agencies want the "glory" of running large procurements and are unhappy with GSA's fees. GSA is trying to address the perception of poor customer service as a way to bring more agencies into the fold.
Congressional staff members call the current MAC environment "chaos." The administration will decide in a matter of weeks whether NIH should continue to run its CIO-SP3 government-wide contract. OFPP administrator Dan Gordon says several broad policy decisions must be made to address the challenges around multiple award contracts.