Senator Daniel Coats(R-IN) gave his “Waste of the Week” report today. The topic was the $4.7 Billion spent on updating Marine One with nothing to show for the money spent. The helicopter is used by the president for short air trips, and transport to Air Force One.
He spoke of the impact of waste, fraud, & abuse has on the amount of discretionary budget available for proper spending, and linked that issue with what he characterized as “out-of-control” entitlement spending.
Part of the issue, said Coats, was an eagerness on the part of acquisitions programs, and also of defense contractors’ internal policies of “just getting things going.” That strategy is marked by the assumption that once a project is initiated and large sums of money spent, Congress will be reluctant to terminate it with nothing to show as a result.
The Defense Department’s Acquisitions arm has been on the GAO’s annual ‘High-Risk’ report for several years now.
While Coats did not mention the unchained spending risks associated with Cost-Plus contracts, Senator John McCain(R-AR), Chairman of the Armed Services committee talked of the procurement process’s need for reformation earlier this week as a part of fiscal year 2017’s National Defense Authorization Act.