Consolidation of American Forces Radio and Television Service--Washington and Los Angeles Broadcasting Facilities
LCD-80-54: Published: May 9, 1980. Publicly Released: May 9, 1980.
- Full Report:
GAO reviewed the Department of Defense's (DOD) plan to consolidate its American Forces Radio and Television Service Broadcasting activities at Arlington, Virginia, with its broadcasting activities at Los Angeles, California. The American Forces Radio and Television Service is part of a worldwide broadcast system which provides American radio and television programs to nearly one million American military and civilian personnel stationed overseas. The Service is responsible for providing policy and management guidance and acquiring programs for the worldwide broadcast system. Its mission is to provide command information as well as entertainment materials through the broadcast system for DOD personnel. The plan to consolidate the two broadcasting activities is part of an evolving worldwide, joint-service centralization of DOD radio and television management and a modernization of technological capability.
Service officials estimated costs for the consolidation to be about $350,000 for permanent change of station for 21 employees and $140,000 for preparation of the Los Angeles site. However, because of the planned joint-service centralization of its radio/television management, DOD will continue to use the Washington facility. Therefore, unless DOD is able to cancel other leases as a part of moving personnel into the space vacated by the Washington facility, there may be no budgetary saving to the Government. The planned consolidation in Los Angeles is appropriate since the Washington facility's occupied space is only marginally satisfactory. In addition, problems exist with building maintenance, security, emergency power, aircraft noise, and wasteful use of space. These problems would be resolved by relocating to Los Angeles. In June 1978, a review determined that the electronic equipment at the Washington facility was nonstandard and obselete, and because of equipment failure, the station may not be able to stay on the air continuously. Space previously adapted for studio use is available at the Los Angeles facility. Its use would enable the consolidation of the service's audiovisual activities at a location out of the National Capital Region and would eliminate some of the broadcasting problems inherent in the Washington facility.