WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives Rob Andrews (D-N.J.) and Mike Conaway (R-Texas), the Chairman and top Republican Member of the House Armed Services Committee’s Panel on Defense Acquisition Reform, released the following statement on the Department of Defense’s announcement  of plans to increase efficiency and boost productivity in acquisition:

“As American families continue to struggle through these difficult economic times, it is more important than ever that we protect their hard-earned tax dollars from government waste and abuse. The House Armed Services Committee and this Congress have taken great efforts to improve the efficiency of the defense acquisition system in order to minimize waste in the defense budget. We applaud Secretary Gates and Dr. Carter for tackling acquisition reform and for embracing many of the reforms identified in our panel’s report and in the House-passed IMPROVE Acquisition Act to meet this end. 

“In particular, we support the Department’s efforts to identify and correct problems early, pursue auditable financial statements, apply more management attention to the acquisition of services—particularly on requirements—and increase small business participation in the defense industrial base.  We must learn more about the Department’s plans in the weeks ahead, but we look forward to working with DOD on these efforts.  This announcement makes it even more critical that the Senate take up and pass the IMPROVE Acquisition Act of 2010, our panel’s bipartisan acquisition reform legislation that passed the House 417-3 in April of this year, in order to advance DOD’s acquisition reform efforts.”