U.S. Attorneys:

Better Models Can Help Reduce Resource Disparities Among Offices

T-GGD-91-14: Published: Mar 13, 1991. Publicly Released: Mar 13, 1991.

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GAO discussed whether attorney staffing disparities existed among U.S. Attorney offices, focusing on attorney staffing allocation methods that could reduce disparities among offices and make the staff allocations more economically efficient. GAO noted that: (1) the Department of Justice's allocation process did not adequately account for differences among U.S. attorney offices' work loads; (2) its work-load model indicated that resource disparities existed among U.S. Attorney offices; (3) fiscal year 1989 data suggested that 44 offices expended less criminal attorney time and 35 offices expended less civil attorney time than the model predicted; (4) conversely, such data also indicated that 22 offices used more criminal time and 37 offices used more civil time than the model predicted; (5) application of its allocation model in the drug litigation area indicated that there was a high level of agreement between the work-load model and the allocation model; and (6) the models served as a rational starting point for allocating attorneys, but could not substitute for managerial and political judgement.

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