Department of Commerce

prevent Civilian agency billion dollar acquisition cost overruns

From: Roger Heymann, PE Federal Employee NOAA NESDIS roger.heymann@noaa.gov COST Savings Idea: That Congress and the civilian Federal Government departments and agencies take a new hard line on leaders and managers that lead and manage major large acquisition programs such that there are Billion dollar overruns and multi year delays. This has been a problem with NOAA and its NPOESS satellites, NASA with the Webb telescope, and more With disciplined competent planning, budgeting technology assessments should bring operational acquisitions online to operations without Billion dollar overruns. Today in particular the Federal government and the nation cannot afford this. No one individual, agency department, agency organization, or an entire agency should be allowed to get away with Billion dollar project overruns. SES leaders who are responsible for this should be removed from projects and possibly terminated, this should possibly extend to higher assistant administrator levels, entire structures of an organization that contributed to this should be re-organized and possibly dissolved, with some employees at the GS 15 level downgraded or dismissed. No one program or individual should be allowed to mismanage a program so badly to incur billion dollar overruns or deny the Federal government and the country the benefits of a needed program. Competent technology staff hiring and development, strong culture and training, a focus on budget and schedule, and strong efforts at technology validation should be emphasized. Contractors too should be held more accountable.

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Idea No. 16411