Pentagon to Add 20K Jobs in Arms-Buying Overhaul

Obama says acquisitions program has 'run amok'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted May 7, 2009 7:40 AM CDT
US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, right, greets U.S. Marines as he tours the Forward Operating Base Bastion in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, Thursday May 7, 2009.    (AP Photo/Jason Reed/pool)
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(Newser) – The Defense Department will add 20,000 jobs over the next 5 years in an overhaul of its $100 billion weapons-buying process, Reuters reports. New regulations will tie compensation more closely to performance, and the Pentagon will require “real, substantial” tax savings in any multiyear deals, a deputy defense secretary told Congress yesterday. The “unprecedented” plan “will result in a properly sized, well-trained, capable, and ethical workforce,” he said.

Some 9,000 of the new jobs will be at two department agencies that handle contracts; 11,000 will be outsourced contractor positions converted into civilian government posts. The Pentagon’s buying process has long faced criticism, with top programs months behind schedule and costs soaring. President Obama has said the system has “run amok” and needs a reboot.