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Priority Open Recommendations: General Services Administration

GAO-22-105718 Published: Jun 02, 2022. Publicly Released: Jun 09, 2022.
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Fast Facts

Each year, we make more than 1,000 recommendations to help improve the federal government. We alert department heads to where they can save the most money, address issues on our High Risk List, or significantly improve government operations.

This letter outlines our 5 priority open recommendations for GSA as of May 2022.

For example, two of these recommendations could improve the process that GSA uses to seek approval from Congress for its leases and capital projects, which cost billions of dollars annually.

Since our previous letter in May 2021, GSA implemented 1 of our priority recommendations.

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What GAO Found

In May 2021, GAO identified four priority recommendations for the General Services Administration (GSA). Since then, GSA has implemented one of those recommendations by developing and implementing a quality control plan for improving the quality of its data regarding the performance of commercial real estate brokers with whom GSA contracts to perform a variety of services needed to acquire and complete leases.

In March 2022, GAO identified two additional priority recommendations for GSA, bringing the total number to five, all of which fall into the Federal Real Property Management area. These recommendations involve: 

  • improving decision-making related to the Department of Homeland Security's headquarters consolidation,
  • addressing the accuracy of publicly available street address information in GSA's real-property database, and
  •  assessing GSA's prospectus process for leases and capital projects and reporting the results of the assessment to Congress.

GSA's continued attention to these issues could lead to significant improvements in federal real property management—a high-risk area that GAO has identified as needing transformation to address economy, efficiency, or effectiveness challenges.

Why GAO Did This Study

Priority open recommendations are the GAO recommendations that warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies because their implementation could save large amounts of money; improve congressional and/or executive branch decision-making on major issues; eliminate mismanagement, fraud, and abuse; or ensure that programs comply with laws and funds are legally spent, among other benefits. Since 2015 GAO has sent letters to selected agencies to highlight the importance of implementing such recommendations.

For more information, contact David Trimble at (202) 512-2834 or

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