Feds Put Data on Contractor Misdeeds Off-Limits to Public

April 7, 2010

The government for the first time is centralizing data about contractors at all federal agencies who were terminated, disbarred or suspended from a federal contract or grant. But the taxpayers whom they shortchanged are not allowed to see it.

The FAPIIS database is maintained by the General Services Administration. Only contractors, federal agencies, and Congress can see it. Investigative reporters seem to be out of luck.

You can press your nose against the window here. But you can't get in.

As an alternative, the watchdog group Project on Government Oversight (POGO) offers a federal contractor misconduct database that is a good resource for gumshoe reporters. POGO compiles this list by searching public records, but it is not complete. Much additional info on federal contractors and spending is available from USAspending.gov and FedSpending.org.

SEJ Publication Types: 
Topics on the Beat: