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Mar 03, 2010

Comments

Bob

By its very actions, DCAA is itself guilty of waste, fraud, and abuse. I have recently witnessed auditors out of control by issuing audit findings that are not compliant with the Federal Acquisiton Regulations (FAR) and the Defense Contract Audit Manual (DCAM); where they have recommended suspending payment on legal, compliant bid and negotiated contracts while they hide behind the shroud of "the best interest of the taxpayers"; and put the burden of time, energy, and costs on industry to prove their unfounded, illogical, and unsubstantiated "audit findings" wrong.

The agency continues to be a poor reflection of the Federal government

Dave

Managements obsession with documenting audit steps not performed is the new Metric Kool Aide. No one cares about contractor costs, it's all about documenting tons of not applicable steps. This new scandal will make the old management by metrics / abuse scandal look like kids stuff. No one actually deals with the contractors face to face anymore because they are documenting audit steps that are not applicable to cover for GAGAS all day.

Beam Me Up

The true problem with DCAA is as it has been for many years - inbred leaders. Nothing will change as the current group of leaders were the ones to cause the problems. Why would anyone expect them to admit to anything. These people have, collectively, a mentality that they do nothing wrong, everyone else is incompetent, and it is their right to rule as they please. The mentioned RA from the MAR is simply the worst of the bunch. The best thing for the taxpayer is to disband the Agency and send the leaders to retirement.

Mandy Smithberger

Don - We'd definitely be curious to know more and would appreciate you e-mailing me with additional info at msmithberger AT pogo.org

Patricia

I've complained numerous times through the anonymous DCAA hotline about sexual harassment, bullying and favoritism, with the outcome only being, covert bullying and favortism. The same fair-haired children get cash awards and time-off awards (the ones that go out with management after work for drinks or look the other way at when people falseify timesheets.) If you complain, you are retaliated against. At my exit interview (I am working for another agency now), I documented the sexual harassment, supervisors drinking on the job, parties being thrown on government time, being forced to approve contractor vouchers in the millions that really should have been reviewed by an auditor and not an office automation clerk...and nothing has changed in the office. A Branch Manager who has been accused of sexual harassment and questionable behavior has been promoted to RAM!

Don

A special group was established within the Office of Inspector General (DoD) in 1983 to oversee the DCAA. During the period 1983 to 1999 this group did oversight reviews and issued reports and policy of DCAA operations. This group was cut back in 1999. The DCAA Director Bill Reed convinced the DoD IG and Deputy IG DCAA would oversee itself. I think POGO needs to look into the role of IG oversight from 1983 to 1999 comapred with DCAA overseeing itself from 2000 to the present.

Gone for Good

Hostile Hotline? Definitely Yes!!! There is absolutely no way that DCAA's hotline can function effectively with the most abusive manager in DCAA being placed as its leader. While serving as the Director of Operations she was the right hand of April. Her abusive fits of rage are legendary in Headquarters. They went completely unchecked because there was nowhere to complain. Nothing has changed from what I hear. Mr. Fitzgerald you should do some exit interviews of those who left Headquarters.

Dan

Congratulations are in order for the Senate Committee; for staying on top of this high profile situation. Thanks to all your actions to date the agency has a new director and has transitioned from an agency performing subpar audits to an agency that no longer performs any audits. The agency is now paralyzed and unable to issue customer required audit reports within a reasonable time period.

Managers crossing regional boundaries to manage offices other than their own and importing managers to manage the office they left behind; also moving offices into new regions all because the regional management currently responsible can't manage the office, these things all increasing costs to tax payers.

Stop the insanity, and the waste!

Snow White

It could be worse. They could have the RD from MA heading up the ombudsman program. Now that would be a trip, wouldn't it?

Anonymous


I speak for many when I relay this thanks for POGO's continued efforts to keep the needs of DCAA reform in the public's interest. As employees we have waited near two years for something to be done. Although the removal of the Director made us hopeful for relief, it was completely overcome by who was selected as leader of the group that is charged with investigating management abuse. The new Director can not be unaware of the message that selection sends.

Mandy Smithberger

So many interesting comments! To Retired Ram:
Part of the promotion process at DCAA requires an auditor seeking a promotion to have their supervisor fill out an evaluation form of 38 questions that are rated 0-4. Many--even most--of the questions are reasonable factors to consider for promotion, but several of them--requiring employees to favorably represent and advance management objectives, take opportunities to further agency goals--are either problematic or could be easily abused a kind of loyalty test. Our point is that it's important for the agency to see if their promotion system is healthy, if they follow their own procedures, etc, in order to establish whether the sense of a loyalty culture at DCAA is real or imagined.

~ Mandy

Retired RAM

I thought the idea of correlating promotions to agency loyalty an interesting concept. How was this group going to measure loyalty?

Bill

Right on POGO! It is a Hostile Hotline. The Gestapo group headed by a vindictive SES individual has destroyed the morale of the agency worse than any previous GAO report. They come in for a week at Government expense based on hearsay evidence, interview entire offices and the alleged defendant who is not even provided an opportunity for representation. Then they disappear into their cubicle at Ft. Belvoir leaving the issue unresolved (if there was one to begin with) and never issue a report. They come into a playroom like a child, take out all the toys and spread them around the room, and then leave never to be seen again while the office remains to pick up the pieces. This is abusive and hostile for sure!

Fred

Thanks POGO for bringing the spotlight back onto DCAA. Apparently GovExec ran out of steam and who wouldn't? Nobody in their right mind would think that eliminating one SES person from an organization would eliminate the cancer that has spread throughout the upper levels of this organization for over a decade. I'm sure the Senate Committee and DoD wants to move past the red headed step child DCAA has become, but the only way change can happen is through wholesale change at the top. Yes the promotion system at DCAA is broken and there are few knowledgeable people left to promote into these positions from within, yet the Agency is announcing multipe GS-13 and 14 positions weekly. It's like they want to grow this monster as big as they can so it creates its own inertia! Someone needs to make the madness stop long enough to make some effective changes. Just take a look at the thousands of hours of resources that are currently being thrown at offices like DynCorp in Central Region. Simply ask what is being accomplished and you will find out that it is all spinning out of control. Thousands of hours being spent doing audits with nothing to show for it. For some reason no sane person can explain, the same SES crew (less April and plus Fitzgerald) that created this mess has been left in charge of the fix!! WE NEED EMERGENCY HELP!! SOMEONE DIAL 911 - PLEASE!!

Mike

Great job POGO! Nothing new has been implemented at DCAA since Ms. Stephenson was reassigned. Mr. Fitzgerald has not communicated his plan with the field auditors and appears to be relying heavily on the advice of the senior executives, the very individuals that were responsible for many of DCAA's audit quality issues and abusive management allegations. I hope the Senate Committee acts fast. We cannot wait another year for a hearing in order to get action from Mr. Fitzgerald. Mr. Fitzgerald needs to immediately initate a series of town hall meetings with the auditors to obtain their input and feedback. Hiding out at Fort Belvoir will not solve the agency's issues.

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