Agency Printing Plants--Choosing the Least Costly Option

PLRD-81-31: Published: Jun 19, 1981. Publicly Released: Jun 19, 1981.

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GAO reviewed selected agency printing plants to identify those issues which management needs to address to ensure that printing is being done economically and efficiently.

Even though printing plants in federal agencies produced over $234 million in printing in 1980, management is not in a position to judge whether the current way of doing business is best or whether better alternatives exist. More controls over agency printing plants are needed to determine: (1) if the plants are justified and at what levels of operation; and (2) the best alternatives available for accomplishing in-house printing needs.

Matters for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we determine what steps the Congress has taken, we will provide updated information.

    Matter: The Chairman of the Joint Committee on Printing should develop, along with the agencies and the Office of Management and Budget, a long-range plan for: (1) examining printing needs and capabilities on a geographical basis; and (2) selecting those alternatives that would ensure service at a reasonable cost.

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we determine what steps the Congress has taken, we will provide updated information.

    Matter: The Chairman of the Joint Committee on Printing should require federal agencies to review the need for their printing plants and to rejustify the plants' continued existence at current operating levels. The agencies should also certify that they have considered other options, such as interagency support and that they have selected the least costly viable option. In support of these actions, GAO suggests that the Committee work with the agencies to establish better criteria for identifying commercially procurable work.

 

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