Senate passes bill to bolster acquisition workforce


The Senate unanimously passed a bill on Dec. 13 that would strengthen the Federal Acquisition Institute and require consistent training standards across the civilian acquisition workforce.

S 2902, the Federal Acquisition Improvement Act, also requires the institute’s director be “appointed by and report directly to” the Office of Federal Procurement Policy administrator.

The bill would allow greater flexibility in spending dollars from the Acquisition Workforce Training Fund, which is financed by fees collected from non- Defense Department governmentwide contracts. The bill would instruct all civilian acquisition training and internship programs to align with standards set through the institute by the OFPP.

The bill will head to the House.

“Improving the Federal Acquisition Institute is a good first step in addressing our ongoing procurement challenges,” said Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, in a statement. Collins, who introduced the bill, said “if better training can help avoid overpaying even one percent of total contract spending, the taxpayer would save more than $5 billion each year.”

OFPP Administrator Dan Gordon said he doesn’t think the administration has taken a position on the legislation but that Collins’ commitment to the acquisition workforce is “broadly appreciated.”

“Sen. Collins…acts in ways to strengthen the workforce and, in that sense, we are pushing in the same direction,” Gordon said.


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