The Federal Times quasi-blog "FedLine" on May 1 had this post: PSC to Senators: Contractors Are Feeling the Pinch, Too. The post describes current Senate inquiries into the alarming proportion of private mercenaries being used by the Defense Department instead of actual United States soldiers and civilian personnel, and the response from an association of government contractors saying that the Senators should back off. Here are two illustrative sentences from the post:
A recent call made by 26 senators to keep the Defense Department’s contract spending in check has prompted the Professional Services Council trade association to ”correct the record.”
. . . PSC refuted the senators’ claim that federal employees cost less — a point that has been studied by several groups but has not yet resulted in a clear answer. But Soloway agreed with the senators in their support for allowing agencies the flexibility to manage their personnel as strategically as possible.
It seems to me that "refuted" should read "disputed," if the answer is now unclear. I'll go with the Senators on this question (whether federal employees cost less) rather than the contractors who have a direct financial interest in maintaining the contracts. It is nice, however, to see other acknowledging that often government contractors actually cost more than government employees doing the same task.
- Dru Stevenson