- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Southern Maryland military contractors will gather next Monday to examine new directives handed down by federal agencies that impact those doing work associated with Patuxent River Naval Air Station.
The meeting, which is being sponsored by the Southern Maryland Navy Alliance, The Patuxent Partnership, Naval Aviation Small Business Roundtable and Acquisition Improvement Team, comes on the heels of a discussion between Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md., 5th) and some local contractors last week.
The new directives passed down by the Office of Management and Budget and Department of Defense have had some direct impacts on what are known as contractor support services, work done by many of the local defense contractors in St. Mary’s County.
Hoyer said the larger July 16 meeting was needed to help explain the directives and get a better handle on how they are actually impacting local businesses. Del. John Bohanan (D-St. Mary’s), an adviser to Hoyer, as well as Vice Adm. David Architzel, Kal Leikach, Diane Balderson and NAVAIR leadership team members, will be part of Monday’s meeting. The leadership team is expected to take and answer questions after remarks are made.
The directives issued over the last year mostly rein in the amount of money that can be spent on contractor services by holding amounts steady from previous years or setting percentage reductions, according to a source close to the discussion.
Added to that is the “in-servicing” that has occurred in some areas of federal government and military that brings some jobs that were once contracted out back to civil service workers. “What we’re looking at is an overall slowing down of the defense budget,” the source said.
The new directive guidelines do not always have to be enforced acrosss the board, the source said, adding that there is “some wiggle room.” Regardless, some contractors are concerned that the directives could be devastating, especially to smaller businesses.
St. Mary’s County Commissioner Todd Morgan (R) said that there is rancor among some of the local contractors over how the directives have been enforced. Morgan, who is also a program manager with defense contractor SAIC, said that the “floating number” for the expenditure reduction put in place this year by the OMB is having an impact now. “You don’t know what the cause and effect is going to be,” he said of the cuts to the contract support service.
If you goThe Office of Management and Budget and the Department of Defense directives and impact on Contract Support Service industry will be discussed July 16 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Bay District Volunteer Fire Department social hall in Lexington Park. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. Advance registration is strongly recommended. Register online at www.paxpartnership.org or call Mary Kukla at 301-866-0541.