Defense Spending

Navy Announces Overhaul of Contracting System

Amid allegations of overbilling

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As allegations of overbilling in the Navy's ship supply network expand, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus on Friday acknowledged gaps in the Navy's oversight and announced plans to revamp its contracting practices.

Mr. Mabus said he had ordered a team of fleet and contracting officials to scrutinize the deficiencies in how it awards the contracts and come up with changes to make the Navy less vulnerable to fraud.

Mr. Mabus's comments, his first in public about the scandal, came after the owner of the Navy's main ship supply company in the Pacific, Leonard Glenn Francis, was arrested in September on charges that he bribed Navy officials to help him overcharge the Navy.