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GAO: DoD Yet to Update Rules on LPTA Procurements

Jeff Brody

The Government Accountability Office has found that the Department of Defense will require over a full year to update its regulations through “lowest price technically acceptable” acquisition procedures. GAO said in its report that Congress required DoD and civilian agencies to revise its rules on using LPTA within 120 days.

LPTA acquisition requires selecting the least expensive offering that meets agency criteria. This "may not be the best choice” for initiatives with complicated requirements such as IT programs, the watchdog noted.

As part of its study on LPTA use, GAO analyzed data from the Federal Procurement Data System-Next Generation system to determine the top four DoD components and top five civilian agencies with procurements worth more than $5 million in fiscal 2018.

According to GAO’s findings, DoD used LPTA acquisition more than civilian agencies. The latter reported that procurements valued at $5 million or more are too complex for LPTA procedures.

GAO’s analysis showed that the Army, Navy, Air Force and Defense Logistics Agency accounted for 25 percent of LPTA procurements in FY 2018. Agencies like the General Services Administration and the departments of Veterans Affairs, Homeland Security, Agriculture and Health and Human Services made up 7 percent of LPTA acquisitions during that period.

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