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GAO: DOD, Service Branches Postpone Nonessential Purchases to Minimize Effects of Continuing Resolutions

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Pentagon
Pentagon

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has found that the Department of Defense (DOD) and military services have implemented practices to mitigate the effects of a continuing resolution, such as delaying nonessential training and purchases and commencing start dates of service contracts after the fiscal year’s first quarter.

GAO interviewed DOD officials and found that activities associated with preparing for and operating under a stopgap measure have become routine for the department, according to a report published Monday.

Those activities are developing spending plans, adjusting contracts to reflect the availability of funds and creating legislative anomaly proposals. The congressional watchdog also found a slowdown in the hiring of defense civilian employees during CRs.

“For fiscal years 2017, 2018, and 2020, DOD hired on average about 200 civilians per day during CR periods as compared with about 250 people per day during non-CR periods,” the GAO report reads.