Panel Rips Army Fraud 'Crisis'

Raps military on wasted contract billions
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 1, 2007 4:51 AM CDT
Army Secretary Pete Geren talks to soldiers earlier this year.   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The Army is under fire for failing to train enough officers to supervise billions of dollars in contracts and allowing waste and fraud to flourish, reports the New York Times.  The problems have "created a crisis," according to an independent six-member panel appointed by Army Secretary Pete Geren and charged with investigating contracts to supply US troops in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The "blunt" report lashes officials for failing to respond quickly to mounting money management issues in the Army, which spends some $4 billion a year on such contracts. The panel recommends increasing the number of Army contracting officers by 25 percent in coming years. “You need more people and better-trained people in contracting," said one observer. "Work isn’t getting done or it’s done poorly.”