Trade groups ask White House to stop creating regs for contractors

Trade groups ask White House to stop creating regs for contractors
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Trade associations want the White House to stop issuing executive actions that take aim at federal contracting.

In a letter to senior White House officials, the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), the Aerospace Industries Association, the Professional Services Council and the Information Technology Industry Council asked that  “no further presidential directives primarily focused on government contractors be issued for the foreseeable future.”

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Since 2009, the groups said, President Obama has issued 12 executive orders pertaining to government contracting, which have resulted in 16 new regulations.

“At a time when government budgets are under siege, cost efficiency is essential, and there is a broad agreement about the need for the government to open its aperture to enable access to the full marketplace of capabilities, this rapid growth in compliance requirements is becoming untenable,” the groups said in their letter to White House chief of staff Denis McDonoughDenis McDonoughObama: Bannon, Breitbart shifted media narrative in 'powerful direction' DNC chairman to teach at Brown University Trump mocked Obama for three chiefs of staff in three years MORE and senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.

Christopher Fletcher, director of executive branch policy for NDIA, said the executive orders the groups are referring to include a February 2014 order that established a $10.10 minimum wage for contractors; an April 2014 presidential memorandum that forced the Department of Labor to propose a rule requiring federal contractors and subcontractors to submit summary data on employee compensation by sex and race to advance pay equality; and most recently, an order that would require federal contractors to report past labor law violations.

Industry groups contend the proposed rule from the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council would blacklist companies from procuring federal contracts.

While the groups have openly expressed support for some and raised major concerns about others, they said the executive orders overall have significantly increased the costs of doing business with the government.

“As efforts continue across the administration, and within our member companies, to expand the broad diversity of firms willing and able to support the government and to bring real innovation to bear for our nation, these unique and costly government-unique regulations simply raise an already substantial barrier between the commercial and government marketplaces,” the letter said.