DON’T LOOK NOW, BUT DHS RUNS OUT OF MONEY SOON
It’s a new calendar year with new focus areas, in addition to some old ones (see above). Don’t forget, though, that way back in 2014 Congress passed legislation hat funded the Department of Homeland Security only through the end of February. Without Congressional action before then, some parts of the agency will shut down. No buying that requires appropriated dollars will take place. Even before the end of February contractors may see a fall-off in DHS business. Agency officials are likely to be increasingly reluctant to award contracts if uncertainty remains about whether there could be a lapse in funding. While some Congressional leaders are calling for a “clean” DHS spending bill, let’s remember that the last Congress could have done that if they wanted. We’re here because many Republicans, who now control both houses of Congress, oppose the President’s plans for immigration reform via Executive Order and see the DHS spending bill as the vehicle through which they can prohibit enforcement of that order. Even now, DHS cannot start any new business. The whole situation frustrates both DHS agencies and the contractors who support them. Don’t expect a final solution for at least another month, but until then remember that your DHS business will be mostly about planning, not execution.