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Tracking Contractor Misconduct

September 18, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

The Senate passed their version of the 2009 Defense Authorization Act last night, and with it, plans for a government-created contractor misconduct database.

The Project on Government Oversight, which maintains its own contractor misconduct database, calls today’s action in the Senate a “positive accomplishment” despite the plan’s deficiencies:

>The database would only include defense contractors and would be accessible only to Department of Defense procurement officials and Congress. The database may be made available to other government officials at the discretion of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics, but it’s off-limits to the public. It would also include only instances involving the award or performance of contracts, and only those occurring in the most recent 5-year period.

The House version of the Defense Authorization Act also calls for a contractor misconduct database, but theirs would be available to the public.

Differences between the Senate and House bills will have to be reconciled by a conference committee before being sent to the President.

President Bush has threatened to veto the House bill, but the overwhelming votes in both the Senate and the House indicate that Congress would likely vote to override a veto.

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