VA Health Care:

Delays in Awarding Major Construction Contracts

HRD-91-84: Published: May 30, 1991. Publicly Released: May 30, 1991.

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Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) compliance with reporting and contract award requirements for 18 construction projects funded by the VA fiscal year 1990 appropriation act.

GAO found that: (1) as of September 30, 1990, 17 projects lacked working drawings or construction contracts awarded by the required date; (2) 15 of the 17 project delays did not constitute an impoundment of budget authority; (3) VA actions for 15 of the delayed projects showed no intent to avoid using the funds for the purpose for which they were appropriated; (4) VA reasons for construction delays included changes in the projects' scope or design and receipt of bids that exceeded available funds; and (5) VA awarded or expected to award contracts for 13 of the 17 contracts by September 30, 1991.