Army secretary to oversee Iraqi reconstruction

The Army secretary has been designated the lead person responsible for acquisition and program management support for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq and Washington.

Deputy secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz said in a memo last week that the Army secretary will determine and prioritize the requirements of the new assignment.

Deidre Lee, the Defense Department's procurement director, had temporarily managed more than $18 billion worth of requests for proposals for a wide range of reconstruction and communications projects. Her role came to an end this month.

James Roche, the former Air Force secretary chosen by President Bush to become the new Army secretary, is still awaiting Senate confirmation. If confirmed, he will take over management of the award, administration and oversight of all contracts, grants and other actions in support of the coalition authority and any successor entity.

'Program management support comprises all aspects of project oversight, including planning, scheduling and execution, as may be required by the scope of work, directed timelines and applicable financial management regulations,' Wolfowitz said.

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