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White House to Part Ways With the Contractor Behind

Cheryl Campbell, senior vice president of CGI Federal, testified on Capitol Hill in October.

Cheryl Campbell, senior vice president of CGI Federal, testified on Capitol Hill in October. // Evan Vucci/AP

According to a report in The Washington Post, the Obama administration is just about ready to part ways with the contractor behind CGI Federal's contract expires at the end of February, at which point the administration will reportedly sign a 12-month contract with CGI rival Accenture. 

CGI was mainly responsible for getting the federal exchange site up and running by October 1, 2013. That, as you might have heard on television news programs, did not happen quite as planned. The company became a quick and easy scapegoat for the roll-out of the exchanges, an accusation that stuck as CGI slowly began to repair its own work. Even though the site seems to be working much better after a very bumpy October and November, the site is far from what the administration wants it to be. The Post explains: 

Leaders of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services — which oversees the online marketplace — became frustrated with the pace and quality of CGI’s work on the repairs. As federal officials and contractors have been trying to fix various aspects of the Web site in the past few months, about half of the new software code the company has written has failed on the first try, according to internal federal information.

Previously, the Post detailed some of the lingering issues with the site. Those include an inability to enroll eligible Americans in state Medicaid programs automatically, and what are apparently calculation errors pertaining to individual eligibility for subsidies. It's not as visibly dramatic as a website that won't load, but these issues are still problematic. 

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Clarification: CGI Federal's contract expires in February, at which point the administration reportedly plans to sign a new contract with a CGI competitor. An earlier version of this story described this move as a "firing." To clarify, the administration has not ended the contract early. The words fires and fired have been replaced in the headline and the lede.

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