CLEAN UP bill would restore integrity to federal sourcing process
WASHINGTON, May 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Federation of Government Employees today applauded Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., and Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., for reintroducing legislation that would put a halt to the rampant outsourcing of inherently governmental functions.
"The Mikulski-Sarbanes CLEAN UP Act is vital to any serious effort to save taxpayer dollars and restore integrity to the federal sourcing process," AFGE National President John Gage said. "All Americans who depend on the federal government for important services are indebted to them for their courageous leadership."
The CLEAN UP (Correction of Longstanding Errors in Agencies Unsustainable Procurements) Act would:
- Establish overarching principles to govern sourcing. This would ensure that functions deemed inherently governmental, closely associated with inherently governmental or mission-essential are performed by reliable and experienced federal employees. Other functions would shift between federal employees and contractors, depending on which is more efficient and effective, consistent with agency needs and any competition requirements.
- Encourage agencies to insource new functions in order to avoid sole-source and limited competition contracts.
- Ensure that agencies incrementally insource inherently governmental, closely associated with inherently governmental, and mission-essential functions that have been wrongly contracted out.
- Ensure that agencies identify where they are experiencing or expect to experience shortages of federal employees.
- Establish internal business process reengineering as an alternative to the costly and controversial OMB Circular A-76 privatization process.
- Recommend that critically needed reforms to the A-76 process finally be undertaken.
The CLEAN UP Act would build on previous actions by Congress to restore fairness to the contracting out process. Congress already has passed legislation that requires agencies to conduct formal cost comparisons before any work can be outsourced; excludes health care and retirement costs from the cost comparison process to prevent contractors from winning contracts by providing bad benefits; establishes basic bid protest rights for federal employees; requires agencies to inventory their service contracts to identify contracts that are poorly performed, include inherently governmental functions, or cost too much; suspends the infamous OMB Circular A-76 privatization process; and requires that agencies give "special consideration" to insourcing functions that can be performed more efficiently in-house or are so important or sensitive that they never should have been outsourced in the first place.
"AFGE is proud that so many of the sourcing policies we have championed have become law, benefiting taxpayers and all Americans who depend on the federal government for important services," Gage said. "The CLEAN UP Act is the logical next step."
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is the largest federal employee union, representing 625,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia.
SOURCE American Federation of Government Employees