DOE gets procurement back...but at what cost? - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

DOE gets procurement back...but at what cost?

by Nick Delgado

Guam - The Department of Education was given back full delegation over its procurement system today. The General Services Agency stepped in last year after a series of protests were filed against the agency. And there still some concern as to whether the public school system is even ready to take back the responsibility.

There had been talks for the past week about giving DOE back its procurement control, and today GSA Chief Procurement Officer Claudia Acfalle did just that.  "They will be handling their own procurement issues or procurement processes, because they are decentralized and the superintendent has made it known to my administrator that she wish to the procurement staff back," she explained.

GSA took over procurement after several protests, appeals, and dragging work orders were reported. DOE Superintendent Dr. Nerissa Bretania Underwood says she constantly met with her staffers, who have been training with the GSA and says they are ready to come back.  "I met with the procurement staff of DOE that was housed there under GSA; that was about a week-and-a-half ago.  They were ready, they have learned a lot and they are actually ready to come back," she stated.

Earlier this month DOE hired a new supply manager to begin taking the lead on the department's procurement system. Just today, Underwood had her employees speak with GSA to ensure that the transition was a good decision.  "I do know our legal counsel and Mrs. [Taling] Taitano was there this morning to meet with her and then asked if she felt that April 5 might be a better date.  And she said no, she felt that today was the best day," he recalled.

Despite the GSA's efforts to support DOE, Acfalle admits she gave the delegation back today after hearing a constant blame game from DOE.  "They're always blaming, its either GSA has a hiccup in the process or what have you," she said, adding, "that's why were not going to put up a fight about them going back because we're kind of frustrated, we're here with all good heart."

Acfalle says she wishes DOE luck, as there is still a lot more work and cleaning up needing to be done. Underwood, meanwhile, says that she is looking to hire at least three additional buyers to process requisitions in the Procurement Office. 

It's been six months since DOE's delegation has been taken over by GSA, however, Acfalle says agencies such as the Port Authority of Guam will remain under her review until she feels that they are ready to take over for themselves. For the time being, some DOE officials tell KUAM News that they are hoping this procurement now under their agency will result in some progress and fixes from within the school.

  • NEWS HEADLINESMore>>

  • 130 public health complaints under investigation

    130 public health complaints under investigation

    If you've noticed some unsanitary practices while dining out...well, you're not alone. Public Health currently has 130 complaints under investigation. The department's Division of Environmental Health is currently prioritizing each one based on the risk iMore >>
    If you've noticed some unsanitary practices while dining out...well, you're not alone. Public Health currently has 130 complaints under investigation. The department's Division of Environmental Health is currently prioritizing each one based on the risk iMore >>
  • Increase in demand creates four more Guam-Japan flights

    Increase in demand creates four more Guam-Japan flights

    There are more signs that the Japanese tourism market may be picking up. Citing an increase in demand, United Airlines is restoring four weekly 737-flights between Guam and Nagoya from December to the end of March. This adds another 1,000 seats a week, anMore >>
    There are more signs that the Japanese tourism market may be picking up. Citing an increase in demand, United Airlines is restoring four weekly 737-flights between Guam and Nagoya from December to the end of March. This adds another 1,000 seats a week, anMore >>
  • Man leads high-speed chase with children in car

    Man leads high-speed chase with children in car

    A 40 year old man is accused of leading police on a high speed chase through Dededo with two children inside the car. Alfred Heypwo Elias is charged with two counts of child abuse along with a special allegation of vulnerable victim, reckless conduct, andMore >>
    A 40 year old man is accused of leading police on a high speed chase through Dededo with two children inside the car. Alfred Heypwo Elias is charged with two counts of child abuse along with a special allegation of vulnerable victim, reckless conduct, andMore >>
Powered by Frankly