Contracting Advisory Panel Deck Stacked; Panel Violates Federal Advisory Committee Act
January 31, 2005
According to information leaked to the Project On Government Oversight (POGO), a new Congressionally-mandated panel established to evaluate contracting rules will be dominated by contractor interests and advocates. In what could be a bad omen, the Acquisition Advisory Panel is off to an inauspicious start – it has failed to follow the rules for holding meetings under the Federal Advisory Committee Act.
The Panel, which published a notice in the Federal Register on January 27, 2005, is scheduled to hold its first meeting on February 9, 2005. Regulations implementing Section 10 of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C., Appendix 2, require that at least 15 calendar days prior public notice be given before an advisory committee meeting is held. However, the notice given by the Acquisition Advisory Panel is only 13 days before the first meeting, and thus violates FACA requirements.
"As we saw in the Darleen Druyun case, the distinction between public and private in the defense contracting community is meaningless. There have been a growing number of critics of trends in government contracting including Inspectors Generals and the Government Accountability Office but none of them are represented. The panel is dominated by contractor advocates – both inside and outside government – who have embraced Representative Tom Davis' (R-VA) agenda of gutting taxpayer protections," said Danielle Brian, Executive Director of POGO.
The White House is expected to announce members of the panel in the next few days. A list of Panel members and biographical information follows. The advisory panel, which is supposed "... to review Federal contracting laws, regulations, and government-wide policies ..." is the brain child of House Government Reform Committee Chairman Tom Davis (R-VA) and is widely expected to call for further contractor-friendly reforms (see legislation at http://www.wifcon.com/dodauth4/dod04_1423.htm).
The Project On Government Oversight has been critical of efforts to reduce oversight, transparency and competition in federal contracting that have been championed by Chairman Davis, particularly through annual legislation that he sponsors. For more information, see POGO's contract oversight archives.
Acquisition Advisory Panel
Louis Addeo, President, AT&T Government Solutions
HIGHLIGHTS: Twentieth largest technology contractor for the federal government, responsible for creating the national "do not call list" (see http://www.washingtontechnology.com/top-100/2004/20.html). Contributed $1,000 in 2004 to Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA). Source: www.opensecrets.org
Frank J. Anderson, Jr., President, Defense Acquisition University
HIGHLIGHTS: Reports directly to Deidre Lee, another appointee.
Allan V. Burman, President, Jefferson Solutions and Senior VP
HIGHLIGHTS: Provides training and consulting to contractors and government. Clients include Accenture, Dyncorp, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). Since 2000, has contributed $3,000 to Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA). Source: www.opensecrets.org
Carl De Maio, President, The Performance Institute
HIGHLIGHTS: Runs a company that presents training seminars about the advantages of outsourcing government jobs.
Marshall J. Doke, Jr., Partner, Gardere
HIGHLIGHTS: Lawyer representing contractors.
David A. Drabkin, Deputy Associate Administrator for Acquisition Policy, General Services Administration
HIGHLIGHTS: Has been a cheerleader for financially-questionable contracting vehicles such as share-in-savings contracting. Since 2000, has made campaign contributions of $1,500 to Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA). Source: www.opensecrets.org
John Etherton, Vice President, Legislative Affairs, Aerospace Industries Association
HIGHLIGHTS: Leading lobbyist for trade association of hundreds of defense and aerospace contractors including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman.
James A. "Ty" Hughes, Jr., Deputy General Counsel for Acquisition for the Air Force
HIGHLIGHTS: The General Counsel's office has been embroiled in the Darleen Druyun Boeing tanker leasing deal scandal.
Deidre Lee, Director of Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy, Department of Defense
HIGHLIGHTS: Has been a stalwart supporter of Rep. Tom Davis' initiatives. Has previously recused herself from contract awards involving SAIC, which is her husband's employer and the eighth largest contractor for the Pentagon. Her husband is also an active member of the Professional Services Council, a leading contractor lobby.
Tom Luedke, Assistant Administrator for Procurement, NASA
CHAIR: Marcia G. Madsen, Partner Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw
HIGHLIGHTS: Lawyer representing contractors.
Melanie Sabelhaus, Deputy Administrator for Small Business Administration
Joshua I. Schwartz, Professor of Law and Co-Director of the Government Procurement Law Program, George Washington University School of Law
Roger Waldron, Director, Acquisition Management Center , Federal Supply Service
HIGHLIGHTS: Head of procurement policy for an agency that has taken a lead in promoting interagency contracts which were recently added to the Government Accountability Office's High Risk series because of waste, fraud, and abuse exposed by the GAO and Inspectors General.
Founded in 1981, the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that champions good government reforms. POGO's investigations into corruption, misconduct, and conflicts of interest achieve a more effective, accountable, open, and ethical federal government.
# # #