USAID plans for improved contracting performanceOn April 1, 2011, the federal Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan (Commission) held a hearing to evaluate the progress of the U.S. Agency for International Development reforms to its contracting policy, including reforms to USAID procurement practices, and its potential to cut waste and identify effective and sustainable projects in the non-military aspect of its contingency operations. USAID administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah was the sole witness.
In Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as in more than 90 other countries, USAID provides humanitarian assistance, promotes stability and good governance, and fosters economic development, primarily through contracts and grants. At the hearing, Dr. Shah outlined his reform agenda and fielded questions from the Commissioners concerning the implementation and impact of the reforms in the two wartime theaters. The major themes addressed, included: the agency’s efforts to combat fraud, waste, and abuse; procurement reforms to better deliver assistance in a much more effective and evidence-based manner with a greater focus on sustainability; the utilization of the agency’s Office of Transition Initiatives; and the effectiveness and promotion of contractor competition and accountability. Methods and solutions to the challenges impeding reform were explored. Dr. Shah also provided his vision for USAID’s future in contingency operations.
The hearing began at 9:30 a.m. in Room 216 of the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington, DC. Commission Co-Chair Christopher Shays presided.
Transcript: April 1, 2011 hearing transcript