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Highlights

In response to a congressional request, GAO reported on the progress of federal procurement reform under Executive Order 12352 which was designed to establish a system in each agency to manage procurement, simplify the procurement process, develop a professional work force, and increase the use of competition.

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Recommendations

Matter for Congressional Consideration

Matter Status Comments
Congress should provide in the Office of Federal Procurement Policy reauthorization bill: (1) decision authority for the Policy Office to prescribe, where necessary, government-wide criteria for an acceptable procurement system, oversee the new government-wide regulation, and conduct tests of innovative concepts and methods to streamline procurement and increase competition; (2) recognition of the role of assisting the agencies in developing their procurement systems; and (3) a statutory basis for the agency management responsibilities spelled out in the Executive Order.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Office of Management and Budget 1. The Director, OMB, should ensure that high-level agency managers are aware of their responsibilities to: (1) establish a management structure throughout their agencies with complete procurement system responsibilities; (2) dedicate enough time and talent to designing reform guidance; (3) adopt the substance of reform guidance being issued under the Executive Order; and (4) conduct an internal review of the effectiveness of agency implementation.
Closed - Implemented
When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Office of Management and Budget 2. The Director, OMB, should use progress reports to the President on the Executive Order as a vehicle to encourage implementation by reporting both progress and problems and furnish copies of these reports to the Senate Governmental Affairs and House Government Operations Committees. The reports should be based upon the actual agency responses to guidance stemming from the Executive Order. Such agency responses should describe the extent of implementation and reasons for any delay.
Closed - Implemented
GAO believes that progress reports continue to highlight only accomplishments.
Office of Management and Budget 3. The Director, OMB, should assign responsibility for developing Executive Order guidance on agency reviews of procurement needs and priorities.
Closed - Not Implemented
This matter was discussed at an Executive Committee meeting and certain actions were formalized in Office of Federal Procurement Policy Letter 81-1. However, responsibility for developing guidance has not yet been assigned, and the matter is considered closed by the Executive Committee.

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