Improvements Needed in the Management of Supplying and Distributing Vehicle Parts

LCD-78-202: Published: Mar 16, 1978. Publicly Released: Mar 16, 1978.

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The government spends an estimated $100 million annually in purchasing replacement parts to support its fleet of 425,000 commercially designed vehicles. The Department of Defense (DOD), General Services Administration (GSA), and the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) each operate a centralized distribution system to supply parts for federal vehicles.

Because these agencies do not coordinate their programs, duplicate management exists in the buying, stocking, and distribution of vehicle parts, and the logistics involved in obtaining vehicle parts varies from agency to agency. The Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) and USPS Western Area Supply Center stock and manage certain identical parts, but DOD costs to purchase the items are much higher. The Federal Supply Services and DLA independently negotiate indefinite delivery vehicle parts contracts with suppliers, and this results in differing prices. Some items which are stocked by DLA and USPS are not accessible to GSA and other civil agencies and are purchased from private suppliers. Some agencies use rebuilt parts while others use only new parts. The increased use of rebuilt parts would decrease costs, energy consumption, and pollution. A common or single manager could eliminate the overlap and duplication in supplying and distributing vehicle parts. The recently established Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) appears to be the appropriate authority.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: Although USPS is independent of the executive branch and cannot be compelled to participate in a unified program, it should coordinate its vehicle parts supply program and work with the agency which will be responsible for managing the government's program. The Administrator, OFPP, should: (1) determine which agency will manage the government's vehicle spare parts supply program; (2) require that agency to evaluate the systems in use to determine which should be used for governmentwide support of all agencies, and (3) consider requiring agencies to increase the use of rebuilt parts.

    Agency Affected:


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