Tuesday, August 17, 2004

A Halliburton Has More Time to Verify Costs

Halliburton Has More Time to Verify Costs

"Government contractors normally cannot be paid more than 85 percent of their invoices until they fully account for their costs. Twice this year the Army set this rule aside for Halliburton as the company cataloged its costs and explained how it was billing the government. The most recent reprieve expired on Sunday"

- basically we're still paying them the $8 billion they've been promised even though they've already bilked us for approximately $4.2 (if not more) on a no-bid contract.

seesh....if this were any other small business in America, every one of the executive officers would be in orange get-ups.


John Blacke said...

As a government contractor myself, and the son of a mother who issues contracts for the DOD, (not to worry, I don't do any work for the Dept. of Defense as that would be a conflict of interest) I can tell you that's not the case. All contractors, at all levels, sign contracts agreeing to specified payment and within that contract is the option to bid a specific job at a higher price because of potential unknowns. This being the case, payments vary from the standardized contract, in order to protect the contractor. It is standard procedure for the Feds with all contractors, including the small guys like me. Take care,


John Blacke said...

And one more thing, contractors NEVER have to provide their costs within the course of payment. Estimated costs are all that are given to be examined for anyone that is contracted through - and not working directly for - the U.S. Government.

kizzy said...

I realize that the bidding system for government contracts always allow for an elastic clause, however my "beef" (so to say) is that 1. this was a no-bid contract, and 2. Halliburton's effecitvely non-performance on their current contract agreements.

- really what I'm miffed with is the fact that we've already paid out to them about 1/4 of the contract price agreed upon and they HAVEN'T given us 1/4 of the services promised. Compare that to any small business in america, and most likely that business would be out of business if they treated their contracts as such.

John Blacke said...

One thing you have to remember is that Halliburton is the ONLY U.S. company that can perform the tasks required for restructuring and basically, reinventing the entire oil industry in the now free country of Iraq.
Now, please don't misunderstand, I'm not advocating giving this company free reign. However, I am suggesting that some slack be given to a company whose employees put their lives on the line daily, in the name of securing a free Iraq by making available an economic structure - and that structure is oil. Another thing to remember that people atop any pedastal - imaginary or real - always have interpersonal contact. So, it shouldn't be hard to believe that someone else aside from Cheney - like Democrats - have links and lobbyists that try to persuade the issuers of governmental contracts to look more highly upon Halliburton. Especially, as I've stated, are really the only U.S. company capable of performing the tasks necessary.

kizzy said...

I think that we are agreeing on the same point. Effectively: We both agree that we shouldn't allow a company free reign to simply do whatever they desire with government money without some sort of responsibility in place?

And in regards to the ONLY US company? Not so. Bechtel Group Inc. and Fluor Corporation are comapnies who should have been considered for the contract. And incidentally have more money, more experience and were in a better position to offer a greater deal to the Army Corps of Engineers. (considering that Bechtel has several projects already established in the Middle East, several of which are currently finishing ahead of schedule and under budget.)go to hoovers.com and check the research.

I am in no way stating that Halliburton employees should be put at risk. Infact many of them are treated better, paid more and are better protected than the soliders that we've sent to Iraq. What I am having a problem with is the lax administration of and by Halliburton and it mis-handling of government funds. 70% of which is syphoned off for simple administrative functions (for KBR [which is a subsidary of Halliburon ]employees - many of whom are in Huston TX, NOT Najef Iraq)

Lastly, I'm not denying that lobbying interests have a great influence on what happens with granting government contracts to companies. However in a situation such as this, where there are three companies who are all relatively equally matched, there should have been a bidding process put in place versus an actual handing over of the entire bid to only one company.