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CSIS Panel: Speed, Not Cost, is Key Question in Defense Acquisition Reform

...Katherine Blakeley, of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment, said, the three concerns in defense spending still come down to: What are you getting, how much is it going to cost and when are you getting it. But speed of delivery is taking on new importance as threats change. She said House Armed Services Committee chairman Rep. Mac Thornberry’s Acquisition Agility Act, is a recognition that “we’re not buying a lot more” ships and aircraft, but a start on realizing the speed of technology and where you need in the future to “actually plug and play.”

The Senate has not taken up Thornberry’s bill, which probably will include in the HASC’s versions of the defense authorization bill. Thornberry, a Republican from Texas, is committee chairman.

Blakeley added, “It is not an existential moment when you’re awarding a contract for a big program” by building in room for technological upgrades. It also gives new opportunities for those who lost out on that large contract and smaller firms to win a share of the government’s business.

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