Military Sealift Command:

Relocation of Atlantic Area Command to Norfolk, Virginia, Area

NSIAD-98-40R: Published: Oct 9, 1997. Publicly Released: Oct 9, 1997.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Navy's estimated costs of relocating the Military Sealift Command's (MSC) Atlantic area command from the Army's Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne, New Jersey, to Camp Pendleton, an Army National Guard base in the Norfolk, Virginia area.

GAO noted that: (1) MSC officials estimate that the overall one-time cost to relocate the Atlantic area command from Bayonne to the Norfolk area would be about $9.2 million; (2) this estimate includes various personnel, military construction, and transportation costs; (3) GAO's analysis, as well as independent reviews conducted by the Army's Base Realignment and Closure Office and the Naval Audit Service, show that the estimate is a reasonable approximation of the costs that are likely to be incurred for the move; (4) officials at MSC told GAO they considered, but rejected, Bayonne area sites for a variety of reasons and chose to move to the Norfolk area primarily for operational reasons; (5) because the Command did not document its consideration of the alternate sites, GAO could not specifically identify the precise cost differentials between the Norfolk and Bayonne area sites; (6) nonetheless, GAO's analysis indicated that the higher moving costs associated with relocating to the Norfolk area are likely to be offset over time by lower annual operating costs at Camp Pendleton; and (7) these lower costs are largely due to the consolidation of two Command activities and the associated reduction in personnel in the Norfolk area.

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