Comments on GAO Report "Army Reserve and Army National Guard Unit Reorganizations Disruptive:

More Effective Controls Needed"

LCD-78-405: Published: Nov 28, 1977. Publicly Released: Dec 28, 1977.

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A letter from Major General J. G. Smith, Jr., Arizona National Guard, concerned the GAO report entitled "Army Reserve and Army National Guard Unit Reorganizations Disruptive: More Effective Controls Needed." General Smith charged that: a portion of the report was addressed almost exclusively to reorganizations that took place in February-April 1976 in Arizona, California, and Michigan; the actions involved units with a strength of 1,247, compared to the approximately 400,000 authorized strength of the National Guard; the Arizona Guard's first notice that the report was issued was from the news media; the audit in Arizona was conducted by one man in approximately 12 to 14 man-hours during September 27-29, 1976; facts and findings pertaining to Arizona were not submitted to the Adjutant General for review in accordance with GAO procedures; and the general received an "outline summary" of observations in which the primary item was a $400,000 construction cost estimate attendant to the Arizona-Michigan-California reorganizations.

GAO analyzed approximately 20 major Army National Guard reorganizations and included the Arizona-Michigan-California reorganizations as an example of the costly effects of unit reorganizations undertaken for reasons other than improving overall structure or unit readiness. Regrets were offered for failure to provide copies of the report promptly, but briefings and a summary were provided to the general. Significantly more time was spent on evaluations than indicated by General Smith's letter. While in Arizona, a GAO representative reviewed the GAO report process with the general, but in the interest of timely reporting, the report was issued to the Secretary of Defense without obtaining written comments from the Army Reserve and National Guard. A review of documents showed that the $400,000 construction cost estimate was still a high-priority item, and the Guard included the project in its fiscal year 1979-83 five-year construction plan for fiscal year 1981. (Author/HTW)

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