Nextgov: Acquisition Failures at VA Lead to Congressional Calls for Enhanced Oversight

Several leading Republicans on the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee expressed strong reservations about the Veterans Affairs Department’s continued pursuit of major acquisitions over concerns about its management of several multi-billion dollar modernization projects.

During a joint hearing on Tuesday, lawmakers on the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations and the Subcommittee on Technology Modernization criticized the VA over its management of major technology programs, saying that the agency lacks consistent oversight and accountability procedures needed to ensure the success of its acquisitions…

“The VA has to demonstrate better management before it can start any new programs, and we cannot entrust it with any more taxpayer money to chase after these failed programs,” Rosendale said. “It’s our responsibility to make sure the mistakes of the past are not repeated.”

Rosendale also cited the Government Accountability Office’s August report on the VA’s acquisition program management framework, which is designed to manage the department’s purchases of goods and services. While the framework was implemented in 2017, it remains voluntary and has not been used to manage VA’s major acquisitions. GAO previously added VA’s acquisition management to its high-risk list—or HRL—in 2019, which catalogs federal programs and operations that are “vulnerable to fraud, waste, abuse and mismanagement, or need transformation.” … Read the full article here.

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