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GSA Proposes Changes to Contracts for Government Charge/Credit Account Services

June 13, 1996
Contact: Hap Connors
(hap.connors@gsa.gov)

As part of its ongoing drive to enhance the services provided to federal agencies, the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) today announced it is proposing to change its single vendor-single service program to a multiple vendor contract award for each of its charge/credit account programs. The proposed new system will further simplify purchases of more than $4 billion a year of travel, supplies and services, and fuel by federal employees and agencies.

David J. Barram, Acting GSA Administrator, described the proposal as another example of how GSA is using business practices to put the customer first, cut red tape and empower employees to get results.

Under the proposal, the new multiple vendor contracts would allow federal agencies to select and apply appropriate commercial services and emerging technologies to their own operations. GSA will play a key role in facilitating governmentwide access to current and emerging commercial services and catalyzing joint government and industry reinvention efforts, Barram said.

Frank P. Pugliese, Jr., Commissioner of GSAs Federal Supply Service (FSS) said, The change in buying strategy reflects GSAs new interactive contracting approach, which challenges industries to develop value-added services that streamline Government operations.

Since the 1980s, contractor-provided charge/credit accounts for government travel, supplies and services and fuel have been negotiated and procured by GSA under single award contracts for each program. These programs provide simplified payment tools for federal agencies.

Pugliese said that moving from single award to multiple contracts, which would become effective in November 1998, represents a dramatic shift in procurement policy for governmentwide financial services. Multiple vendors meeting governmentwide requirements could be awarded long-term contracts for providing charge/credit account services for one or more business lines (e.g., travel, supplies and services, and fuel). Vendors meeting governmentwide requirements could also offer additional value-added services within the scope of their contracts. Federal agencies would have the opportunity to review contractor proposals and select their vendor(s) of choice.

To award the contracts, GSA would use new Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act authority. The initial contract could be effective for five years with renewal options.

GSAs Federal Supply Service buys over $12 billion a year in goods and services for federal customers and will be conducting this procurement. Ira Jekowsky, FSS Assistant Commissioner for Transportation and Property Management, heads a steering group of FSS program and procurement experts that will seek input from customers, industry and other stakeholders, and draft a statement of work to be circulated for comment.

Details of the proposal were posted in the Commerce Business Daily. GSA will host an industry briefing on July 10 in the Washington, DC area, where interested parties may offer comments about the proposal during a question and answer period. The agency is also accepting written comments within 30 days after the briefing.

The time and location of the GSA industry briefing will be announced within the next few days. For more information on registration, contact Rebecca Koses by June 26, 1996, at (703)305-5071. To receive the information electronically, either fax your name, company, address, and telephone number to (703)305-5094/(703)305-6268, or e-mail this information via the Internet to rebecca.koses@gsa.gov.