SIA praises passage of DHS acquisition reform measure

The Security Industry Association (SIA), a trade association for electronic and physical security solution providers, praised the passage last week of the DHS Acquisition Accountability and Efficiency Act in the House of Representatives.

The measure would require changes in DHS acquisition management, including the development of a multi-year, publicly available acquisition plan to guide procurements and inform the industry of long-term acquisition priorities. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.), the chairman of the House Homeland Security Oversight and Management Subcommittee, and endorsed by SIA.

"Moving this bill forward demonstrates that bipartisan consensus can be found to address issues that affect the safety and security of the American people," Don Erickson, the CEO of SIA, said. "We are encouraged that the House Homeland Security Committee, under the leadership of Chairman (Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas)), has managed to move forward on a number of important homeland security policy initiatives this year, and we will be urging the Senate to act as well."

The bill would also encourage the DHS to consult with industry partners to develop an acquisition strategy, seek to maximize opportunities for small business participation and require automatic triggers of congressional reporting if there are breaches in major acquisition programs. The measure has been referred to the Senate for consideration.

"Chairman Duncan and the committee have really made a coordinated effort to work with industry partners, including SIA, to solicit feedback during the drafting process on H.R. 4228 and other measures," Jake Parker, the director of government relations for SIA, said. "It's a great model of the kind of engagement that will help increase efficiency and accountability in government programs-saving taxpayer dollars and providing more accurate direction for investment and research in the private sector."

SIA represents more than 500 member companies and 300,000 security leaders and experts. The trade association protects and advances member interests by advocating pro-industry policies at the state and federal levels.