Posts tagged "Sequestration"
Jan 14, 2015

A new report by the Congressional Budget Office says that sequestration is not required for fiscal year 2015 as budget appropriations for defense and nondefense programs do not exceed caps on discretionary budget authority.

CBO said Monday that the enacted defense funding for fiscal 2015 is equal to the limit of $585.8 billion, while the nondefense budget of $513.8 billion is slightly below the cap of $514.1 billion.

The caps have been adjusted to include a total of $86.3 billion for overseas contingency operations, disaster relief, Ebola outbreak emergency requirements as well as Medicare, Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income program integrity initiatives, CBO noted.

The report states that if Congress later adds appropriations that breach the budget caps before the end of the fiscal year, CBO will reduce its estimated limits on discretionary spending for fiscal 2016.

CBO also said that automatic spending reductions included in the Budget Control Act of 2011 will reduce the discretionary budget caps for fiscal years 2016 through 2021, but the amount will still gradually increase from $1.02 trillion in fiscal 2016 to $1.14 trillion in fiscal 2021.Reference Article

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Jul 25, 2014
Perhaps it’s because the federal fiscal year wraps at the end of September, kicking off budget talks. Or perhaps it’s that they’re sick of talking about Iraq. Either way, defense officials are resounding the sequestration warning bells, pointing to everything from military readiness to the space race as vulnerable.
 
The two-year budget deal that essentially pushed off sequestration cuts until 2016 has led to a noticeable lull in conversation about the measure. It’s also caused some to regard the initial panic over sequestration to be much ado about nothing — even as agencies did report that they experienced some pain from it in 2013.  Reference Article.

 

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May 24, 2013
If the idea of the sequester is to save the government massive amounts of money and cut the deficit, a GSA report indicates that budget cuts actually may hamper the agency's ability to cut back on waste.
 
According to Federal Times, the GSA stands to lose $250 million in funding next year. That funding would force it to cut back on projects that find waste and fraud impacting American taxpayers.
 
Estimates indicate that more than $3 billion in savings could be missed due to the cuts. Read more.

 

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May 3, 2013

WASHINGTON — Despite budget cuts requiring most federal agencies to furlough workers, the State Department says it will not have to force any of its employees to take unpaid leave.

State’s top management official said Friday that the budget sequester cut for the department would be only $400 million, less than half of $850 million that was originally estimated. Read full article.

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Feb 14, 2013

The automatic budget cutting set for March 1 would hamper the government’s ability to protect the public in a range of areas, according to several warnings that were sounded Wednesday.

The Department of Homeland Security said sequestration “would roll back border security, increase wait times at our Nation’s land ports of entry and airports, affect aviation and maritime safety security, leave critical infrastructure vulnerable to attacks, hamper response time” and weaken cybersecurity protections.
 
In a letter to Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (Miss.), the ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said frontline law enforcement personnel would have to be furloughed for a total of 14 days and the department might have to lay off employees.
 
The letter did not specify the potential scheduling of furloughs, but the Defense Department, facing similar cutbacks as are nearly all federal agencies, has said it would spread out the unpaid furlough days starting in April through the remainder of the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30. Furloughs could not begin until after a 30-day notice period and certain aspects are subject to bargaining, in unionized workplaces. Read full article.

 

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Oct 24, 2012

Presidential Debates – On Sequestration

Sequestration is set to take place a little more than two months from now.  Both President Obama and Mitt Romney have gone on the record with their intent to prevent sequestration from occurring.  Here’s what each of the candidates said regarding the topic on the third and last presidential debate held on October 22, 2012.

President Obama: “First of all, the sequester is not something that I've proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen.  The budget that we are talking about is not reducing our military spending.  It is maintaining it.”

Governor Romney:  “Former chief of the -- Joint Chiefs of Staff said that -- Admiral Mullen said that our debt is the biggest national security threat we face. This -- we have weakened our economy. We need a strong economy. We need to have as well a strong military. Our military is second to none in the world. We're blessed with terrific soldiers, and extraordinary technology and intelligence. But the idea of a trillion dollar in cuts through sequestration and budget cuts to the military would change that. We need to have strong allies.”

“Our Navy is old -- excuse me, our Navy is smaller now than at any time since 1917. The Navy said they needed 313 ships to carry out their mission. We're now at under 285. We're headed down to the low 200s if we go through a sequestration. That's unacceptable to me.

It remains to be seen how the result of the election, if any, will factor into the impending January 2, 2013 sequestration. 
 

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Oct 3, 2012

Agency chief acquisition officers are not playing a big role in planning for sequestration or even future budget cuts.

An exclusive Federal News Radio survey of federal CAOs and senior procurement executives found 57 percent of the respondents said they are not preparing for smaller budgets.
 
Joe Jordan, the administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, said the survey responses weren't that surprising.
 
"With the budget situation overall, agencies have some good foreknowledge usually into what their agency's budget will look like," Jordan said in an exclusive interview on In-Depth with Francis Rose. "The important thing is to make sure that planning is integral to the acquisition process overall, make sure agencies are doing good acquisition forecasting, creating robust plans and conducting the appropriate market research, so they can cast a wide net for new businesses that can deliver the goods and services they need in the best possible way." Read full article.

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Sep 20, 2012

Using Sequestration to Your (GSA) Advantage

In addition to the political outcome this winter, there is something else that people are concerned with, but don’t totally understand: Sequestration. The OMB has plans to reduce the budget by nearly 10.3% by January 3, 2013.

For organizations involved with defense spending, difficult decisions will need to be made. If the Department of Defense cuts approximately 108,000 Federal employees, Contractors will be forced to make some cuts to their staff as well.  Some defense contractors have already issued 60-day notices to a portion of the workforce.  Even though the budget cuts won’t immediately reflect the 10.3% decrease in spending, now is the time to start thinking about a few things:

First, what are your current staffing levels?  If you’ve been running lean for the last few years, do you have room in the budget for new talent?  There will be some very accomplished professionals released from the public and private sectors.  Think about your staffing needs and some of the changes you can make that you may not have considered before.

Are you taking advantage of all of the set-asides available to you?  Are you bidding on every contract that has a high probability of win?  Have you formulated a new Marketing Plan for the next ten (10) years, with these budgetary changes into account?  Are you on the GSA Schedule?

These are all important things to look at right now.  GovPartners understands the coming challenges and are assisting many clients navigate the uncertain future we’re facing.  Here are some areas we may be able to help:

·         Market Research and Capture Management:  GovPartners will research the opportunities that are available for your organization to help alleviate some of the uncertainty in the market.

·         If you’re not on the GSA schedule, GovPartners can assist you in determining which schedule is right for your company, prepare the submission and follow it through to completion.

·         Teaming:  GovPartners has recently relaunched the SubTeamPartners (STP) network. Through this network, GovPartners can assist you in facilitating teaming partnerships for targeted government opportunities.  STP matches your teaming needs with other contractors complementing each company's areas of service and/ or socio economic statuses for set-aside requirements. This provides you with the visibility and capabilities to  bid on opportunities that may not have been available to you before.

·        Proposal Preparation:  In the past, most companies had staff that were dedicated to preparing their company proposals.   The environment and economic climate has changed, and more companies are utilizing 3rd parties to assist with each proposal effort.  GovPartners develops lasting relationships and partnerships on integrity. Our proposal preparation team allows our clients to experience a service that provides proposal with the ambiance of your own in-house proposal department.

·         Once you’ve acquired the contract, GovPartners provides Acquisition and Contract Management and Administration to include kick-off meeting attendance, invoicing, Quality Control, Performance Evaluation, deliverables, close-out reporting, etc.

Let GovPartners help you Prepare to Win and  Perform to Expand.

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Jul 17, 2012
Sequestration - the automatic across-the-board cuts that will occur if an agreement cannot be reached regarding the nation's deficit.  These cuts would go into effect on January 1, 2012.  These defense cuts would take place over the span of a decade, amounting to $500 billion.

Prime Contractors in the defense industry are warning of massive layoffs, with Lockheed Martin threatening to layoff up to 123,000 personnel should sequestration occur.  Meanwhile, lobbying expenses from military contractors has increased by 11.5%, for a total of $15.9 million, in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the same quarter in 2011.  Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin increased their spending by 51% and 25% respectively.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made a plea to Congress in the end of June urging Congress to prevent sequestration budget cuts from threatening "the programs critical to our nation's security." 

Acting Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Jeffrey Zients has agreed to testify before his committee on the looming defense cuts.  This hearing will occur two weeks after the scheduled July 18 hearing in which members of the defense industry will discuss the impact of sequestration cuts on U.S. companies.

A majority of Democrats and Republicans (which includes the Obama administration) are opposed to the sequestration cuts, but both parties have so far failed to reach an agreement on the alternatives they could implement to replace the cuts.

By: Ira Evangelista, GovPartners Market Analyst

 

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