Mission and Functions of the National Capital Planning Commission

RCED-83-115: Published: Jun 24, 1983. Publicly Released: Jun 24, 1983.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the role, mission, and functions of the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC).

Although NCPC activities are directed toward protecting the Federal interest in the Nation's Capital, GAO could not comment on policy issues, because "Federal interest" has no strict definition. However, GAO did describe NCPC membership and its functions. Specifically, GAO found that five elements of the NCPC comprehensive plan have been adopted. These encompass: (1) foreign missions and international agencies; (2) Federal environment; (3) Federal goals; (4) Federal facilities; and (5) Federal employment. NCPC does not have authority to implement the goals and policies of its comprehensive plan; however, Federal agencies that propose Capital area development projects seek NCPC approval of their proposals. NCPC relies on informal monitoring of agencies to ensure that they submit development plans as required. As the central Federal planning agency in the National Capital region, NCPC consults with and advises other planning bodies on regional development matters. NCPC citizen participation procedures offer the public opportunities to provide input to NCPC deliberations. Finally, GAO could not comment on whether the NCPC membership composition is best suited to protect the Federal interest because that interest has not been strictly defined.

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