Cummings, Connolly Hammer Rationale for OPM-GSA Merger

Congressman Gerry Connolly - FITARA Awards and Forum 2018

Congressman Gerry Connolly - FITARA Awards and Forum 2018

Reps. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., and Gerry Connolly, D-Va., strongly voiced doubts that the Trump Administration’s plan to merge the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the General Services Administration (GSA) would help solve OPM’s existing IT troubles in a July 15 letter to OPM Acting Director Margaret Weichert.

Rep. Cummings, chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, and Rep. Connolly, chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, asserted that Weichert has failed to make the case that moving OPM’s functions to GSA would solve the tech problems.

“You repeatedly said that OPM’s legacy IT systems were outdated and in dire need of repair, but you provided no explanation as to why the move to GSA would improve the technology or its operations. In fact, GAO has warned that moving elements of OPM’s IT to GSA could exacerbate problems,” the representatives wrote.

The letter raises concerns about the move in general, and leaves no doubt as to how Connolly and Cummings feel about the proposed merger.

“We wish to convey in the clearest possible terms that we oppose the Administration’s intentions for OPM,” the letter states.

The letter reiterated requests for additional documents from OPM on the merger, and added interview requests for OPM Deputy Director Michael Rigas, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Associate Director Peter Warren, and OMB Deputy Assistant Director for Management Dustin Brown. The letter requests those interviews by July 30.

The version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) approved by the House last week contains an amendment offered by Connolly that would prevent the administration from eliminating OPM.

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