The Wall Street Journal on Feb. 5, 2013 published an op-ed piece outlining a four-point strategy to cut the Defense Department’s budget. Acquisition reform was prominenetly featured in the op-ed which was authored by Michele Flournoy, a Defense Department undersecretary from 2009 until last year. Flournoy had been mentioned as a candidate for DoD Secretary until the Administration nominated Chuck Hagel.
Flournoy cites unnecessary overhead in DoD, offering the Defense Secretary’s office itself as an example. From the mid-1990’s until now, staff within that unit has grown from 600 to nearly 1,000.
She also recommends that military health care spending be cut. She advocates asking retirees who are now privately employed to obtain insurance through their employers.
Flournoy also believes that reactivation of the Base Realignment and Closure Commission could continued to drive down excess infrastructure costs.
Last but not least, Flournoy highlights the potential benefits of acquisition reform in several areas. “DoD is still operating with procurement timelines unresponsive to need, perverse incentives for program managers, inadequate numbers of trained acquisition professionals, and insufficient dialog with industry,” she writes.
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