USA Today has a fascinating op-ed by Gretchen Hamel about the "Christmas in September" phenomenon of federal agencies rushing to spend their entire budgets before the fiscal year ends Sept. 30:
Washington trade publications are filled with articles offering advice to businesses that want to hop on the federal spending gravy train by taking advantage of the year-end spending spree...
This summer, as furloughs were set to begin, officials at a Defense Department agency sent an e-mail to colleagues urging them to burn through their budgets. Meeting spending deadlines was "critical in our efforts to (spend) 100% of our available resources this fiscal year," the e-mail said.
The companies that feed on the gusher of cash that still flows from our government are quite open about their activities. "We believe it's going to be a feeding frenzy,"Chris Romani, president of Integrity Management Consulting, told Federal News Radio. "We looked at the funding profiles of our target agencies ... and we see that they have a lot of mission needs and a lot of unobligated funds."
The radio station reported in July that "vendors may be rethinking August vacations in order to handle what many expect to be one of the busiest end-of-the-federal fiscal year buying sprees in recent memory."