Budgets cuts, contracting reforms and the military drawdown in Afghanistan have pushed government contract spending to its lowest level in more than seven years.
Government spending on contracts plunged almost $58 billion – 11 percent – to about $460 billion in fiscal 2013, according to the Office of Management and Budget and preliminary estimates from the Government Accountability Office.
Spending has fallen three of the past four years, from a peak of $550 billion in fiscal 2009 — and administration officials say more declines lie ahead.
“For fiscal 2014, we expect agencies to continue these smarter buying practices to deliver even more value to the taxpayers,” said Office of Management and Budget spokesman Frank Benenati.
Rob Burton, former deputy administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy at OMB and a government contracts attorney at Venable, said the steep drop in procurement spending is the result of numerous factors and policies.
Sequestration, the continued drawdown of military operations in Afghanistan, along with OMB policies to encourage spending cuts such as strategic sourcing, all played a role, he said.
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