Further Information on HUD's 1983 Reductions in Force

RCED-83-80: Published: Dec 23, 1982. Publicly Released: Dec 27, 1982.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO answered questions regarding the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) planned reduction in force (RIF) for fiscal year (FY) 1983. The questions dealt with: (1) whether HUD officials considered alternatives to the RIF; (2) how HUD estimated the costs and savings associated with the RIF; and (3) the impact of the RIF on various program and administrative offices.

GAO found that HUD did not conduct any formal studies on alternatives to a RIF. However, HUD internal memorandums show that it considered alternatives, such as using attrition and continuing an existing hiring freeze, as part of its staffing strategy for FY 1982. HUD was able to greatly reduce the number of positions to be abolished because of high attrition. GAO also found that HUD cost and savings estimates omitted a number of factors such as administrative and legal costs, the costs associated with early retirement, and future years' salary savings. Further, HUD did not prepare any documented studies or analyses on the programmatic impact of the recent RIF. Most of the program officials interviewed by GAO said that the RIF should not substantially impede their organizations' ability to carry out program and legislative responsibilities or that it was too early to tell. However, officials added that the RIF has lowered staff morale.

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