The General Services Administration's Consumer Information Center

LCD-78-412: Published: Feb 23, 1978. Publicly Released: Feb 23, 1978.

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The Consumer Information Center was established in 1970 as an independent office within the General Services Aministration (GSA) to make available to the public a wide variety of consumer-related product information accumulated by the Federal Government as a result of its procurement and use of the products. The Center: determines what publications interest the public, obtains publications from Federal agencies to meet consumer interest, prints and distributes a list of these publications in its Consumer Information Catalog, and informs the public that the information is available.

The Center appears to have effectively promoted the development and dissemination of information of interest to a broad audience of consumers. Although the Center locates and reviews a large number of publications, its efforts could be supplemented to avoid developing new publications that may duplicate existing ones. Costs for the Center are estimated at over $6.9 million a year; the largest single portion, $3.6 million, is for distribution of free publications. These distribution costs are primarily postage or order-filling labor costs.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of General Services should direct that the Center Director investigate alternative ways to increase the Center's effectiveness in informing the public of available information. The Center should consider using the Government Printing Office's select list catalog, the Department of Agriculture's catalogs and lists, and other Government catalogs to further publicize consumer information at the least cost to the Government.

    Agency Affected:

  2. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator of General Services should direct that the Center Director investigate alternative ways to increase the Center's effectiveness in informing the public of available information. The Center should consider using the Government Printing Office's select list catalog, the Department of Agriculture's catalogs and lists, and other Government catalogs to further publicize consumer information at the least cost to the Government.

    Agency Affected:

 

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