Air Force Budget:

Opportunity to Reduce Appropriations Used for Temporary Lodging

NSIAD-91-179: Published: Jul 3, 1991. Publicly Released: Jul 3, 1991.

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GAO provided information on: (1) excess funds derived from daily service charges for temporarily lodging Air Force personnel; and (2) the use of a nonappropriated capital investment account for upgrading and maintaining such lodging.

GAO found that: (1) since it budgeted for the same capital requirements with both appropriated and nonappropriated funds, the Air Force accumulated an average of $23 million in excess funds in its capital investment account during fiscal year (FY) 1986 and FY 1990; (2) only the Air Force designates temporary lodging facilities as mission-essential facilities and regulations require installations to develop budgets to cover capital requirements with nonappropriated funds; (3) dual budgets were considered a barrier against possible shortfalls in appropriated fund support; (4) at the end of FY 1990, the Air Force's capital investment account balance was $19 million; (5) the Air Force suggested that the major commands use the available cash to meet capital requirements such as installation of telephones, televisions and cable service, and carpeting; (6) Air Force major commands reported an unvalidated $75 million in capital requirements for FY 1991 through the next 2 years; and (7) it was inappropriate to budget for the same capital requirements in both appropriated and nonappropriated funds.

Matters for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The House Appropriations Committee cut the Air Force FY 1992 budget request by $19 million to reflect findings in the GAO report and also recommended that the Air Force modify regulations on temporary lodging facilities.

    Matter: To eliminate the excess in the capital investment account, the Committees on Appropriations may wish to consider reducing the Air Force's FY 1992 budget request by $19 million and requiring the Air Force to use the funds available in the nonappropriated fund to satisfy capital requirements.

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The House Appropriations Committee cut the Air Force FY 1992 budget request by $19 million to reflect findings in the GAO report and also recommended that the Air Force modify regulations on temporary lodging facilities. The actual cut from the FY 1992 appropriation was $9.5 million.

    Matter: To eliminate the excess in the capital investment account, the Committees on Appropriations may wish to consider reducing the Air Force's FY 1992 budget request by $19 million and requiring the Air Force to use the funds available in the nonappropriated fund to satisfy capital requirements.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The Department of Defense has prepared a draft directive instructing the Air Force to discontinue budgeting for the same capital requirements in both appropriated and nonappropriated accounts. The draft directive is currently being reviewed and the projected issue date is late 1991. The Air Force has already issued a similar instruction on August 31, 1991.

    Recommendation: The dual budgeting for capital requirements is inappropriate and results in excess funds. To prevent further accumulation of excess funds, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Air Force to discontinue the practice of budgeting for the same capital requirements in both appropriated and nonappropriated accounts.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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