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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the factors that have contributed to the delays and cost increases in the Diplomatic Security Construction Program, focusing on the: (1) extent of the delays and cost increases and the reasons for them; and (2) adequacy of the State Department's management of the program.

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Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of State 1. The Secretary of State should develop a system that: (1) documents the extent contractor performance appraisals are conducted by FBO consistent with its current policy; and (2) ensures performance appraisals are considered as a part of contractor responsibility determinations.
Closed - Implemented
FBO now requires periodic evaluations to be included in contract files. FBO also requires that a contractor's past performance be included in a written responsibility determination to be prepared before award of contracts in excess of $25,000.
Department of State 2. The Secretary of State should revise the FBO 5-year operations plan to identify: (1) the criteria used for establishing construction project priorities; (2) how security threats affect priorities; and (3) any adjustments in capital construction budget requirements that may result from the adoption of security standards based on threat.
Closed - Implemented
State agreed that corrective actions are needed. FBO has revised its 5-year operations plan. In 1991, State standardized criteria for judging new construction projects to focus on security, affordability, life safety, operational adequacy, foreign policy, and success potential. Using this criteria, State reassessed each project of the 5-year plan. State also revised post security standards.
Department of State 3. The Secretary of State should accelerate the FBO post-master planning process to ensure that the most cost-effective options for meeting post needs are considered as part of State's long-range plans.
Closed - Implemented
State agreed in principle with the recommendation, but due to limited resources, did not develop master facility plans for each post. State said it will prepare full facility plans for those posts which need them. However, State did not identify the criteria for determining which posts would require full facility plans.

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