Defense Budget Issues:

Uniform Definition of Management Support Agencies Needed

NSIAD-90-255: Published: Jul 30, 1990. Publicly Released: Aug 15, 1990.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO determined whether the budget for the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) properly reflected the funds applied to management support agencies and activities (MSA).

GAO found that: (1) it could not determine whether MSA funds were properly accounted for in the OSD budget because the Department of Defense (DOD) did not have a uniform MSA definition; (2) the OSD budget did not completely and accurately identify all of the funds applied to organizations that performed management support functions for OSD; (3) individuals employed in MSA were inappropriately accounted for as Defense Logistics Agency field activity employees, causing OSD to gain additional personnel without reporting resource use; (4) MSA had poor management and ineffective OSD oversight and policy enforcement; and (5) MSA could accomplish the needed staff work with fewer people.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: DOD agreed with the recommendation and implemented it.

    Recommendation: While DOD has taken some steps toward meeting the congressional conferees' mandate that DOD clearly describe and justify the programs and budgets of all MSA, the Secretary of Defense should develop uniform agencywide MSA criteria and a definition before the next budget submission.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense


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