Defense AT&L: September-October 2008
To borrow a line from singer-songwriter Bob Dylan,
“The times, they are a-changin’,” and so are the
roles of some key people in the acquisition com-
munity—specifically the program manager and
the business financial manager.
A major change is the military equipment valuation and
accountability (MEVA) initiative, which is an ongoing De-
partment of Defense-wide effort to establish and maintain
accurate and relevant financial accountability for the de-
partment’s military equipment. It is critically important to
understand the cost basis for military equipment so DoD
knows how much the taxpayer has already invested and
where new investments are needed to respond to current
and emerging requirements. Capturing this information
requires a significant transformation from how DoD has
done business in the past. The success of the depart-
ment’s efforts begins with and depends heavily upon its
program and business financial managers.
The MEVA initiative established an initial baseline for
military equipment values at the end of fiscal year 2006.
Actual values were determined whenever possible, and
an average cost methodology using budgetary appropria-
tions was used to ascribe value to items of equipment.
But this was only the beginning of the effort required to
comply with changing laws and regulations for the finan-
cial accounting for military equipment. Since establish-
ment of the baseline, new rules have been developed
for the proper financial accounting treatment for military
equipment and for determining the full cost of each item.
DoD is moving toward obligation-based valuations and
is beginning to use actual line item contract values for
asset valuations. An item-unique identification registry has
been established to provide enterprise-level documenta-
tion of life cycle events for each asset. Continued spiral
development of the Capital Asset Management System–
Military Equipment has provided additional capabilities
for recording and managing m