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Air Force Logistics Modernization Program Should Comply With Brooks Act

IMTEC-86-16: Published: May 15, 1986. Publicly Released: May 15, 1986.

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GAO reviewed the procedures the Air Force Logistics Command followed in procuring computer equipment and services for its Requirements Data Bank Program, which was designed to update automated logistics systems supporting Air Force activities.

GAO found that the Air Force is not complying with the Brooks Act, which requires federal agencies to procure computer equipment through the General Services Administration (GSA). The Air Force does not believe that the program and other components of its Logistics Management Systems Modernization Program are subject to the act's requirements because it believes that the programs are covered by an amendment to the Armed Services Procurement Act. That amendment exempts certain mission-critical, intelligence- or security-related equipment, and weapons systems from the Brooks Act. GAO believes that the amendment does not cover inventory control, storage depot, base-level, and other logistics systems. The Department of Defense (DOD) has issued guidance distinguishing between those logistics systems designed for administrative and business applications and those designed to meet mission-critical requirements. GAO also found that: (1) it had previously designated the Logistics Management Systems Modernization Program as subject to the Brooks Act; and (2) since the Requirements Data Bank Program is not involved in mission-critical or wartime decisionmaking activities, it is subject to the Brooks Act.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: DOD, the House Government Operations Committee, and GAO disagree on the applicability of the Brooks Act and the Warner Amendment to general purpose ADP management information systems. Therefore, while this recommendation is still valid in the GAO opinion, it is clear that DOD and the Air Force disagree and DOD, therefore, does not intend to take any action.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should revise the "DOD-Wide Guidance for Acquiring Mission Critical Computer Resources Under 10 U.S.C. 2315 (Armed Services Procurement Act)" to be more explicit in defining functional classifications and applications that are exempted by the Warner Amendment.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: DOD, the House Government Operations Committee, and GAO disagree on the applicability of the Brooks Act and the Warner Amendment to general purpose ADP management information systems. Therefore, while this recommendation is still valid in the GAO opinion, it is clear that DOD and the Air Force disagree and DOD, therefore does not intend to take any action.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Air Force to submit an agency procurement request for the Requirements Data Bank Program to the Administrator of General Services. The Air Force should submit the request before carrying out the next contract option for additional computer equipment and services. For the other programs in the Air Force's Logistics Management Systems Modernization Program, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Air Force to submit an agency procurement request before taking any further procurement actions.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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