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Press Release Published: Apr 4, 2023

Mace, McClain, Sessions Probe Biden Admin’s Compliance with Outsourcing Law

WASHINGTON—Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation Chairwoman Nancy Mace (R-S.C.), Subcommittee on Health Care and Financial Services Chairwoman Lisa McClain (R-Mich.), and Subcommittee on Government Operations and the Federal Workforce Chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas) are pressing the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for information on the Biden Administration’s implementation of a law designed to help federal agencies determine what work tasks should be outsourced to the private sector.

“At a time of surging annual deficits, the Administration should be using all cost-saving tools at its disposal – including outsourcing functions that can be performed more efficiently by the private sector. Yet, we note that, under the President’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 budget proposal, the federal civilian workforce (excluding Defense Department employees) would grow by 148,000 – just over 10.5 percent – in just the two years from FY 2022 to FY 2024,” the lawmakers wrote.

The Federal Activities Inventory Reform (FAIR) Act of 1998 requires each federal agency to annually file with the Office of Management and Budget an inventory of non-inherently governmental activities the agency performs using federal employees. After a consultation and review of the inventory by the OMB Director, these agency lists are to be transmitted to Congress and made available to the public. Conducting and posting FAIR Act inventories is a key component of a transparent government.

“While OMB circular A-76 provides guidance to agencies on how to comply with the FAIR Act, it appears the annual inventories are not being comprehensively conducted under this Administration. For instance, the most recent FAIR Act inventory posted on the website of the General Services Administration is for FY 2018. Many more recent agency inventories posted online are done so in formats that are barely decipherable,” the lawmakers continued.

The letter to Shalanda Young, director of the Office of Management and Budget, can be found here.