One of the first — and even more than two decades later, still one of the most important — changes during the procurement reform era of the 1990s was the introduction of a “micropurchase” authority in the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1995.
In the background was the desire to allow program customers the ability to use a government credit card to make very small purchases directly, without the significant extra time (think of the purchase order request landing at the bottom of the contracting person’s in-box) and administrative cost that come with working through the contracting office.
An interesting backstory to this statutory change was the role of a young contract specialist at the Department of Health and Human Services named Michelle Craddock in helping develop the administration’s legislative proposal on this. Even before the 1995 law, the government could make purchases under $2,500 without going through a competition. Having just arrived in Washington in 1993 to become administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, I was tasked with trying to find out if there were any statutory barriers to using a credit card for under-$2,500 purchases. On a learning tour of contracting offices to prepare me for my job as a Washington outsider awaiting Senate confirmation, Craddock was one of the contracting people I met in a visit set up by the HHS senior procurement executive.
Keep reading this article at: https://fcw.com/blogs/lectern/2018/07/kelman-microconsulting.aspx