Under Secretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy said today the State Department will be ready for the planned October 1 handover of responsibilities in Iraq from the Defense Department. A report issued by the State Department Inspector General last week said the U.S. is failing to meet “key milestones” for this transition.
Ambassador Kennedy made these remarks at a hearing of the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan which was reviewing the State Department’s contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
As the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan prepares its final report to Congress, its investigation into how U.S. tax dollars are spent on contracting projects in Afghanistan and Iraq continued today with a hearing on its fifth report titled "Sustainability: Hidden costs risk new waste."
The new report warns that various sustainability projects such as power plants and water treatment plants threaten to create billions of dollars in new waste of American taxpayers' money if the Iraqi and Afghanistan governments are unable to fund or operate such projects following a draw down in U.S troops in both countries beginning this year.
The Commission was created by Congress in 2008 and is mandated to find waste, fraud, abuse and mismanagement of contracts. The panel is scheduled to deliver its final report to Congress next month.