West-Central Missouri Congressman Ike Skelton says President Obama has signed into law a bill that should significantly crack down on wasteful defense contract spending.
The president has signed the weapons acquisition overhaul bill, one of those very rare pieces of legislation to pass both chambers of Congress unanimously. During the signing ceremony on the South Lawn of the White House, Obama said the bill will check huge cost overruns on defense contracts and increase competition. Skelton, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, joined the president during the signing ceremony.
One government study indicated that cost overruns on 95 defense programs totaled roughly $295 billion.
"That’s a lot of money and a lot of weapons systems," Skelton told the Missourinet, "This hopefully will put that behind us."
The bill creates a new director of independent cost assessment to watch over defense contracts. The position would be appointed by the president, subject to confirmation by the Senate.
"The process of acquiring has been antiquated and people just haven’t been working together; stove piping, the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing," Skelton said. " There was no one, no discipline, to keep the contractors on time and on budget."