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May 2, 2000

H.R. 3582 - Federal Contractor Flexibility Act of 2000
(Davis (R) VA and 11 cosponsors)

The Administration does not support House passage of H.R. 3582, the Federal Contractor Flexibility Act. The Administration supports the principle that a Federal agency should not specify experience and education requirements for contractor personnel in the procurement of information technology unless the agency otherwise cannot assure its needs will be met without such requirements. However, the Administration favors addressing this issue through better management practices, rather than through the enactment of additional laws.

The Administration has been increasing its emphasis on the implementation of performance based contracting (PBC) approaches, where the Government identifies its requirements in terms of desired performance objectives rather than emphasizing how the work is to be performed. When PBC methods are used, the contractor decides how best to address issues involving resources, such as personnel and relevant qualifications, necessary to meet those performance objectives. The implementation of PBC places increased emphasis on past performance evaluations, which will enable the Government to ascertain if a company has a proven track record for providing quality Information Technology performance commensurate with the specified performance requirements. Consequently, the use of PBC (which is one of the Administration's priority management objectives), along with the consideration of past performance during the evaluation process, should help achieve the ends sought by H.R. 3582 by avoiding situations where agencies specify unnecessary minimum experience and education requirements for contractor personnel.