At the 2001 and 2002 CSA Annual Meetings, the CSA membership decided to push for reform in services contracting.  To summarize the views articulated at that meeting:  

The trend in contracting for services is significant.  The government is relying more and more on private industry to deliver cost-effective, quality services.  However, reforming the way services are acquired lags behind that achieved in the past few years for weapons system acquisition.  Similar acquisition reform initiatives aimed specifically at services contracting is now needed to help the government continue to reduce its infrastructure and costs.  

After a series of hearings, SARA was introduced on March 4, 2002 (H.R. 3832) by Representative Tom Davis (R-VA), chairman of the House Government Reform Technology and Procurement Policy Subcommittee.  SARA goes beyond just services reform; it is aimed at ensuring that government procurement executives have the tools to take advantage of the efficiencies offered in the commercial marketplace to achieve the best value for the taxpayer.   

The introduction of SARA moves us closer to that goal. CSA in particular supports the provision related to “payment terms.” As we noted in our testimony on SARA, improving payment terms for service contractors is a “win-win” for both the government and private sector contractors.  It will save the government money because the contractor will be able to reduce, if not eliminate, carrying costs included with firm, fixed price offers.  CSA also supports Title IV which is aimed at providing Government procurement officials with the tools to realign agency purchasing processes in order to eliminate, or at least lower, barriers that make Government business inefficient and unattractive to commercial firms.  The Government must make the transition to commercial practices while maintaining proper stewardship of the public dollar.  

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