Planned Construction of Some Army Dining Facilities in West Germany Can Be Cancelled

PLRD-83-72: Published: May 13, 1983. Publicly Released: May 13, 1983.

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GAO assessed the Army's methods of identifying and justifying the need for construction of new dining facilities in Europe.

GAO found that unneeded construction was planned because the Army did not properly consider existing excess capacity and did not use proper planning factors in computing new requirements. Further, the Army often requests dining facility projects without adequately considering unused capacity in existing facilities. GAO noted that, if existing facilities were fully used and new ones were sized according to Department of Defense criteria, four of the seven projects reviewed by GAO could be canceled at a savings in construction and related costs of over $7.5 million.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to reassess the need for dining facility projects in Germany that are currently planned, programed, or funded to ensure that they are justified considering the capacity, condition, and use of existing facilities. Besides the project at Fuerth, projects at Dexheim, Erlangen, and Kaiserslautern should be canceled. Also, the Army should validate the actions planned by the Giessen Army officials to ensure that the planned actions of closing existing facilities rather than deleting the planned facility project will result in the most economical and efficient alternative to obtaining and maintaining the needed dining capacity.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to reemphasize to Army commands the need to develop up-to-date food service management plans and prepare required studies, evaluations, and planning documents so that needed projects can be properly justified.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should improve the guidance to preclude the overstatement of dining facility needs by instructing the services to use: (1) existing dining facilities in determining the need for and size of a new facility when the existing facilities are within 1,250 feet of the billeting area; (2) a more realistic utilization factor to determine serving requirements when use of the standardized factor is clearly out of line; and (3) the actual number of personnel to occupy the barracks rather than the maximum enlisted barracks capacity when determining the number of personnel to be served.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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