WASHINGTON – Today, the House passed H.R. 1232, the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA), the bipartisan legislation introduced by House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., by voice vote.
“Too often, our Committee sees and reviews billion dollar write-offs of IT programs, in which you cannot find out who was in charge, you cannot find out why they went on so long, and the hardest thing to find out is why they don’t work at the end of a billion dollars,” Issa said. “Good software saves billions of dollars and countless lives and countless hours if it works. Bad or poorly done software can frustrate the American public and deprive them of very product or service they expected to receive.”
Issa concluded, “This is a significant and timely reform that will enhance both defense and non-defense procurement and I urge all members to support the bill.”
The bill, co-sponsored by Committee member Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., will improve efficiency and accountability for federal information technology (IT) procurement by streamlining authority and consolidating rapidly proliferating data centers, among other measures. The federal government spends approximately $80 billion a year on federal IT procurement a year, with experts estimating that as much as $20 billion is wasted annually. Following the disastrous launch of HealthCare.gov in October 2013, President Obama stated, “One of the things [the federal government] does not do well is information technology procurement. This is kind of a systematic problem that we have across the board.”
You can read the redline changes to FITARA here.
You can read the section by section analysis of the bill here.