Venable partners Paul Debolt, Rob Burton and Terry Elling were featured in a March 11, 2009 Government Contractor article on President Obama's March 4, 2009 procurement policy memo.
The article provided background into the recent policy memo, an explanation of the fundamental policy requirements proposed by the administration and the implications for government contractors. The memo contains broad policy pronouncements, and sets forth timetables by which the government must review federal contracting procedures and issue "tough new guidelines" on how it does business.
While the administration plans to bring more work back into the scope of the government and increase the use of fixed-price contracts to save money, many leading procurement officials suggest that better training of the acquisition workforce could bring the biggest cost savings.
Debolt, Burton and Elling agree, writing "the problem is not a lack of rules or policies; it is the lack of sufficient personnel to support the federal procurement system effectively and efficiently. Indeed, for years commentators have bemoaned the inability of the federal acquisition workforce to keep pace with the level of government spending. Consequently, the current problems have arisen, in many cases, simply from a dearth of adequate and experienced personnel."