UPDATE 1-Lockheed cost-tracking system loses certification
* Pentagon pulls certification for cost-management system
* Progress noted at some sites, but Fort Worth lags
ATLANTA Oct 5 (Reuters) - The U.S. Defense Department said on Tuesday that it pulled certification for a Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) system used to analyze costs for aeronautics programs including the F-35 because of a lack of progress in addressing deficiencies.
The Pentagon determined that withdrawal of compliance for Lockheed's "earned value management system" at its Fort Worth, Texas, facility was needed to make sure that the company takes corrective steps in a timely fashion, Defense Department spokesman Cheryl Irwin said in a statement.
Lockheed's aeronautics division is based in Fort Worth. Much of the work for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the Pentagon's costliest weapons program, is centered there.
Earned value management systems, or EVMS, are used by companies to plan, control and analyze the cost performance of programs and identify potential overruns.
The Pentagon's statement on Tuesday said Lockheed had developed so-called "corrective action plans" to address non-compliance after being notified of deficiencies during annual EVMS checks conducted by the Defense Contract Management Agency at 11 company sites.
While most Lockheed sites have made "good progress" in addressing EVMS system deficiencies, Fort Worth "continues to make inadequate progress," the Defense Department statement added.
John Kent, a spokesman for Lockheed's F-35 program communications in Fort Worth, said the defense company learned of the government's decision to withdraw EVMS certification for the Fort Worth site on Oct. 4.
"This action does not affect our ongoing work on the EVMS corrective action plan and it does not reflect any new findings," Kent's statement added.
The move comes as the Pentagon looks to end years of massive cost overruns on weapons programs.
Last month, the Defense Department unveiled a series of 23 detailed steps aimed at cutting waste, including setting shorter timelines for weapons programs and increasing the use of fixed-price, incentive-fee type contracts.
(Reporting by Karen Jacobs; additional reporting by Andrea Shalal-Esa in Washington; editing by Bernard Orr)
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