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GSA Move on Leasing Ensures Best Value for Agencies Taxpayers

GSA #   10416 

October 29, 2007        
Contacts:  Maryanne Beatty (202) 501-1231, Maryanne.beatty@gsa.gov or
Melissa Williams (202) 501-1231, Melissa.Williams@gsa.gov

Washington, DC —The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), in order to better fulfill its mission of providing world-class workspace to federal workers at best value to the American taxpayer, is modifying its lease delegation policy, the agency announced Monday.

“As the government’s premier procurement agency, GSA must ensure that the leasing delegation program is being administered in the most effective and efficient manner possible,” said Administrator Lurita Doan. “This modification is aimed at improving consistency, monitoring and other variables that influence the workspace we provide to our client agencies and the cost to the public.”

Administrator Doan said the change also helps GSA better fulfill its mission by enabling client agencies to more fully focus on their core mandates. “This is precisely why GSA was created – to enable the agencies to target limited resources where they’re most needed,” she said.

Changes to the policy will come in the form of a revision to the Federal Management Regulation (FMR) and FMR Bulletin 2008-B1. The objective is to provide increased oversight to ensure that agencies using GSA-delegated authority comply with all laws, regulations, Executive Orders and OMB Circulars governing lease acquisitions. The revised process was adopted to address deficiencies highlighted by auditors who reviewed the lease procurement files of agencies using GSA’s delegated authority.

“Leasing is one of GSA’s core business functions,” said David Winstead, Commissioner of GSA’s Public Buildings Service.  “We have the expertise and the tools to get the best deals for agencies who lease space from GSA.”

GSA’s actions follow reports by the U.S. Government Accountability Office and GSA Inspector General’s Office identifying program weaknesses in the lease delegation policy. Administrator Doan said she was appreciative of the comprehensive effort that gave GSA the opportunity to take corrective action.

Under the revised FMR, agencies will be allowed delegations for lease requests under 20,000 rentable square feet of space.

The change to the delegation program will become effective upon publication in the Federal Register. Administrator Doan is also writing a letter notifying all agency heads of the lease policy change.

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Founded in 1949, GSA serves as a centralized procurement and property management agency for the federal government.  GSA manages more than one-fourth of the government’s total procurement dollars and influences the management of $500 billion in federal assets, including 8,600 government-owned or leased buildings and 208,000 vehicles.  GSA helps preserve our past and define our future, as a steward of more than 425 historic properties, and as manager of USA.gov, the official portal to federal government information and services. GSA’s mission to provide superior workplaces, expert technology solutions, acquisition services, purchasing and E-Gov travel solutions and management policies, at best value, allows federal agencies to focus on their core missions.

Did You Know?  GSA leases approximately 176 million rentable square feet of space in 7,106 facilities nationwide.