Skip to main content

tv   GSA Administrator Denise Turner Roth on Fiscal Year 2017 Budget  CSPAN  February 29, 2016 9:39pm-10:57pm EST

9:39 pm
get turnout in 2010 and 2015, uneasy but still solid relationship between the grassroots and conservative establishment, that is all kind of breaking apart. it's imploding. that's what we're watching right now as trump moves forward and everyone else seems to be reacting. >> more details available online at washington robert costa, thank you very much for being with us. we appreciate it. >> thank you. next, a house appropriations subcommittee hearing on the president's 2017 budget request for the general services administration. the witness is gsa administrator denise turner roth. she was asked about the fbi's relocation and updates to data technology. this is an hour 15 minutes.
9:40 pm
we're going to get started. the hearing will come to order. welcome to everyone. like to welcome general service administrator denise roth. last year you were here after just a month on the job.
9:41 pm
now you have been on the job for over a year so we are happy to welcome you back. now, everybody knows this is a leap year, right? so today is leap day and with that in mind, i think we should jump right in. i want to see if mr. serrano was paying attention. the budget request today is for $10.18 billion for the federal building fund which is less than 1% below enacted so that's less than last year but while your request appears to be flat, it spends $371 million more in rental income from agencies than it did last year. so i caution the gsa from growing overzealous in its request. in the 2016 omnibus, gsa received an unprecedented 215% increase for construction and acquisition for numerous
9:42 pm
construction projects and this was a significant increase, but this level of spending should not be viewed as the new norm. therefore, i look forward to discussing gsa's request for new construction in fiscal year 2017. this brings me to the administration's request for the fbi headquarters consolidation. last year's hearing, we discussed gsa's proposal to exchange the fbi's current headquarters at the hoover building for a new $2.1 million square foot facility in the greater washington area. it was my understanding when gsa started to pursue such a complicated property exchange change that gsa was convinced the value of the hoover building would be more than enough to pay for new fbi headquarters. however, as we all know, the value of anything is whatever the market will bear and the market has spoken. so far, the value of the hoover building is $1.8 billion less
9:43 pm
than what gsa expected. so today in addition to the $390 million provided in omnibus, the administration is asking the subcommittee for $759 million and another $646 million from the commerce, justice, science subcommittee. so that concerns me a little bit about the size of this request and i still wonder whether gsa has the expertise to execute such a complicated transaction. so we will have a frank discussion about that today. to date, the congress has appropriated $1.6 billion in full consolidation of the department of homeland security headquarters at st. elizabeth. that request includes another $267 million for 2017. as gsa moves forward with its enhanced plan for st. elizabeth i hope to hear more about the gsa's continued effort with the dhs to reduce construction costs
9:44 pm
and increase project efficiency. the president's budget also seeks to establish a $3.1 billion information technology modernization fund for the gsa to replace legacy i.t. systems all across the government. now as the subcommittee that oversees the office of personnel and management, we know as well as anyone about the numerous cybersecurity and operational risks that using an old system poses. we have been continually supportive of funding i.t. upgrades as part of the agency's annual budget request. however, i question the proposed $3 billion in mandatory funding and $100 million in discretionary funding. for what exactly, we don't know because the administration has not formally transmitted legislative language to the congress. what i do know is that agencies should be requesting funding for -- to refresh their i.t. systems on a regular basis as part of their regular budget request.
9:45 pm
the irs is a good example of an agency that chooses to spend less and less on rudimentary i.t. and is experiencing more and more hiccups. so now in the fiscal year 2016 omnibus, the committee provided gsa with construction funding to address long-standing needs and dire conditions at federal courthouses all around the country. the funding provided is important to maintain an open, accessible and well-functioning judicial system. today i hope to learn more about how gsa will work with the judiciary branch to ensure the courts' needs are best met while also safeguarding the investment of the american taxpayer. finally, i want to emphasize this committee's commitment to shrinking the federal footprint through reductions in gsa's inventory of leased and owned space. over the past several years, this committee has provided significant funding for gsa consolidation activities and i hope here today, how gsa is using those resources to reduce
9:46 pm
space, lower rental costs, serve your customers and ultimately save the taxpayers dollars. once again, welcome, administrator roth. appreciate your service. look forward to your testimony. first let me turn on the ranking member, mr. serrano, for any opening remarks he might make. >> thank you. happy 29th day of the month to you. so somebody who was born today celebrates yesterday or tomorrow? >> don't ask me. >> okay. >> but i do know it takes 365.2526 days to go around the sun. >> you should have warned me not to ask. thank you, mr. chairman. i would like to join you in welcoming the administrator of the general services administration before our subcommittee. you were confirmed by the senate last year after our hearing with you so i really want to congratulate you on
9:47 pm
transitioning to this role more permanently. gsa plays a critical role in making sure our government is running efficiently and effectively, that it is open and transparent to our citizens and that our federal agencies have the resources they need in order to succeed. you confine a variety of roles in one agency, landlord, project manager, recruitment specialist, real estate agent, i.t. specialist, the list goes on and on and on. although you don't see the gsa's name mentioned as much in the media and the press, this variety of roles shows just how critical you are to our government -- how our government operates. i think the subcommittee recognizes that as well. last year, this subcommittee, this committee included significant new funds for the construction of new federal buildings, including several courthouses. i'm interested to know how these projects are moving forward and
9:48 pm
whether the large increase has been a problem in terms of ensuring appropriate personnel to oversee project management. your budget request this year is slightly smaller but really only in comparison to last year's final numbers. your budget includes funding for several construction projects as well as numerous important repairs and alterations which will help reduce the federal backlog in both areas. you also include funding for several new initiatives, two of which i imagine we will spend some time discussing today. one project the gsa has completely changed positions on is the fbi headquarters. last year the subcommittee was told that the general services administration planned to use their exchange power to raise funds to purchase a new fbi campus in either maryland or virginia. we were specifically told at last year's hearing that no appropriated funds would be
9:49 pm
needed for this project, that this committee had no role to play. well, something has clearly changed since your budget request this year includes a request for $759 million in appropriated funding for the construction of a new fbi building. combined with the fbi's request of $646 million for the same project we are facing the exact problem that chairman crenshaw and i mentioned last year. the expectation that the appropriations committee is going to clean up the mess when the exchange authority doesn't raise the funds that are necessary for this project. the building hasn't even been sold yet and this request already tells us that whatever the proceeds are, they won't be near enough. on top of that, it has not been made clear to this subcommittee what the scope of this project is and whether the funds requested this year are sufficiently -- sufficient to fully construct the project.
9:50 pm
it is also somewhat troubling to receive this request when we appear to be years away from potentially breaking ground unless there is an imminent announcement that we are unaware of. i expect we i suspect we will have a lot of discussion about this issue today. a new initiative requested this year is the i.t. modernization fund. i fully support efforts to modernize our government i.t. systems. but this request has not yet been authorized. the gsa cannot do anything if we actually appropriate. i would be very open to conversations about how to make our i.t. procurement system more nimble and responsive to changing technologies. but i'm not sure if this particular request is the way to do it. by and large, i support the numerous efforts gsa is making to ensure the federal agencies
9:51 pm
are accountable and effective organizations. i look forward to discussing these in more detail with you today. and this should be very interesting hearing. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. now, i would like to recognize mr. roth, if you could keep your statements within five minute, the floor is yours. [ no audio ] >> pardon me. should i start over? good afternoon. thank you for inviting me to today's hear on the president's fiscal year 2017 budget request for the general services administration. first, i would like to thank the committee for the robust funding provided to the general services administration in the fy-16
9:52 pm
appropriations bill. we will continue to ensure that tsa utilizes these funds wisely and efficiently, as befitting the trust you have placed in our agency. over the fiscal year 2017 budget builds on last year's progress of prioritizing agency real estate consolidations and infrastructure investments to maximize space utilization, improve security, expand trade, and spear economic development within communities across the nation. in addition, this budget request seeks to enhance the cyber security and efficiency of the federal government's i.t. infrastructure by modernizing i.t. legacy systems. within the federal buildings fund, i would like to highlight three important projects that will strengthen our national security infrastructure and benefit the american taxpayer. first, gsa seeks $759 million to support the construction of a new headquarters facility for the fbi. this new facility will consolidate fbi employees from
9:53 pm
13 locations across the national capital region within a new modern and secure facility. the budget request in conjunction with the $646 million request will allow gsa to award a contract for design and construction of a new fbi headquarters by the end of this call enlen dar year. second, gsa is requesting $267 million to continue executing the enhanced plan for the consolidated dhs headquarters, which will bring fema to the st. elizabeth's west campus, completing nearly 80% of this project. the enhanced plan for st. elizabeth's when completed will reduce the federal footprint by nearly 10 million square feet and save more than $4 billion through avoided lease costs. third, gsa is requesting $248 million for the second and final phase for the port of entry modernization which will improve
9:54 pm
the security of our nations border, as well as expand commerce and trade and support local economic development. all of these investments have a significant impact on the communities in which these projects are located. gsa recognizes its role as an economic catalyst in these communities and works with stakeholders and economic development efforts. we also must use the federal buildings fund for our partner agencies and combat the growing costs of real estate. through consolidation and innovative space solutions, we have reduced the lease inventory by more than 3 million square feet, rentable square feet since 2012. with the projected reduction of square feet by the end of fy-2017. gsa has also partnered with agencies to accelerate the disposal of excess property in fy-2015 we helped agencies dispose of 172 properties, generating 56 million in proceeds.
9:55 pm
beyond our brick and mortar infrastructure is our information technology infrastructure in which the government and the global economy depends. reliable i.t. is vital to all of the services the government proceeds. mission critical systems due to large up front capital investment needs and increasing share of costs that maintaining these older systems occupy in technology budgets. to address these issues, the budget includes requests to establish a $3.1 billion information technology fund, which would be used to retire and modernize legacy and information technology systems to improve cybersecurity and the delivery of services as well as reduce costs. in closing, gsa has made significant progress in fulfilling our mission to delivery the best value and real estate acquisition and technology services to goth and the american people. the president's fy-2017 request
9:56 pm
will enable us to move forward along this trajectory of providing more efficient and effective services at a lower cost so that agencies can focus on their crucial mission. thank you for this opportunity to be with you today and i look forward to answering your questions. >> thank you very much. let me start the questions i figured you would ask about the fbi. when we met last year, we had a pretty lengthy discussion about the whole concept of this change swap. and a couple of questions, i guess to start with, what were you thinking last year was going to be the value of the hoover building? did you have any idea what that might be? and did you have any idea what it might cost to build 2.1 million square feet?
9:57 pm
>> we did have ideas that we were working from. we've been avoiding talking about specific costs related to both the value of hoover as well as the project overall. primarily because we're in an active procurement process currently. >> how did you find out the hoover building is worth $1.8 billion less than you thought it might be? >> let me say, just in stepping back, the project itself and what we have before both this committee as well as the other committee from fbi is really a reflection of where the project is in terms of trying to achieve a full consolidation, as well as fbi's requirement. and i would say that over the past year, we've gotten a better understanding as the project is coming to its maturity with the cost reflect. we blooe the funding we received from this committee and fy-16, swell the requests that's pending, as well as with the cost that we received from its
9:58 pm
value would be reflective of what's needed for the project. >> last year when we talked, there was indication, i think $291 million wasá2q appropriate for the omnibus. was it 391 or 291 i can't remember. but anyway, i think we were told that that would be it from the appropriations standpoint. that would get things started, whatever. now it's like you add up those two, it's about $1.4 billion. so i guess you can understand why we're a little surprised, can't you? >> absolutely. this has been an evolving project. what i will point out to you is how the market values this project, but as well as the further understanding of the requirements of the project. we received clear indication that full consolidation for this project was supported in something that we needed to ensure was a priority as we
9:59 pm
brought this project to bear and the requests are really reflective of that. >> how confident are you that now the evaluation on the building. how confident are you that that's correct? >> we have worked very closely with fbi in terms of just -- and this is really going to the requirements overall, but in terms of the valuation itself, we are really looking forward to what the market responds to. and we have the responses due back from the developers by this summer. that's really going to be the first indication of how they're valuing the project. >> how do you know today that it's, like, $1.8 billion less than you thought? >> because of the requirements. as we start to build out wihat the cost of the requirements are. we worked closely with the fbi. that's rally given us a sense -- >> do you have an appraisal of the hoover building?
10:00 pm
>> the appraisal we have on record is actually an older appraisal. we will likely do appraisals as we go through the process this year. but really, what we're looking for, what we stood up compared with where requirements are today from the fbi and having worked closely with them what we know about the sight themselves and having gone through the environmental evaluation with them, and what we will see in june as we get those responses back from the developers. that's really what we're lining up. >> i guess there's two sides of the equation. if you get into a swap or an exchange, what's the hoover building worth, right? and then how much is it going to cost to build this new 2.1 million square feet. it sounds like you didn't have a very good idea of what that was. if you missed it by almost $2 billion, right? >> i believe the effort was really about an exchange to offset any request for appropriations.
10:01 pm
i mean, ultimately to use the tool of the exchange and to be able to give the full project would have meant we didn't have to have an appropriations request. i think really having a full consolidation on the table, as the requirements as we understand them to really meet the mission of fbi is reflective of the changes that you're seeing. >> did you ever think about selling the hoover building? >> sure. and one of the things that we know is with the exchange, we can ensure that the proceeds from that project go into the new hoover location. >> you're not going to -- you're going to do an exchange, right? >> yes. >> do you think about the fact that if you can exchange the building, the developer is going to have some carrying costs while he builds the building. do you think about whether you should just sell the building, put money in the bank, then go ask somebody to build a new one. and use part of the proceeds for that from what you -- i mean, how did you decide it was better
10:02 pm
to do a swap or an exchange than just sell the building and then build in a new space. >> often times we use our budget requests to come forward with a new project. ultimately, there's a couple of aspects of this proposal that are different and unique. one of them is the fact that we're talking about the hoover, which is on pennsylvania avenue. i think that was part of bringing developers to the table and being interested in this project. ultimately, if we were to do typical disposal, we would have to come back and ask for a larger appropriations request, certainly, as well as then go through the process of a new building overall. and really, having the exchange as a part of this is what we have to ask this committee for. >> is this the biggest exchange you have ever done? >> this would be the largest. >> has gsa ever done any other exchanges? >> we have done other exchanges of varying scales.
10:03 pm
i think the exchanges we've done in the recent past are the largest we've seen in some time. >> do you have any idea how many exchanges you've done in the last ten years. >> in terms of this scale, we have not done any exchange of this scale. >> last year, we kind of questioned whether or not -- this is pretty complicated. is this something that you have in-house capabilities to do? or is this something you're contracts with outside folks? how are you handling all of this? >> we will definitely bring in expertise to help with various aspects. anything from evaluating the requests -- the proposals themselves to doing traffic studies. >> lastee, had you brought in anybody to kind of give you an idea of what numbers we might be talking about? because again, we missed it by at least $2 billion. and along that line, how do we know you asked for another $1.4 billion, how do you know what
10:04 pm
this new $2.1 million of office space is going to cost? i mean, do you know that yet? where do those numbers come from? and why is half of it from gsa and half of it from fbi? >> what we do know is having worked with fbi much closely -- very closely over the past year, having a good sense of their requirements, that's giving us a sense of what the costs are. just really how they're programming the space and how they plan to utilize it. it really has been very much a shared effort between us and the fbi. we worked intensely over the past year and it's part of the reason you're seeing the requests come from both. this isn't a shared effort, as well as just the number itself as you point out would be large overall and definitely didn't want to overburden either budget request. but at the end of the day, what's really going to tell us what we have for the project are those various pieces. what the requirements are and really setting the cost, ensuring we're achooeing a full
10:05 pm
consolidation as part of this request and then trying to both with the appropriations and the 16 funding and the offset of the value of hoover really bringing the project to bear. >> so do you have -- where do you get the $1.4 billion for the appropriation request this year. >> part of it is set by the requirements of the full consolidati consolidation. >> and who looked at that and decided it was going to cost $1.4 billion? >> we do use a team of experts to support our efforts. >> so you got that laid out. 2.1 million square feet is that right? >> yes. and now someone said that's going to cost a little more than we thought? you missed it on that side or you missed it on the value of the hoover. i mean, i hope you'll appreciate our concern is, when you come in and say look, if we had $300 million, we've got a very valuable piece of property downto downtown, we can exchange it, somehow build us a building and
10:06 pm
that's going to be great. and then still ask you what is the value. and nobody seems to know yet, other than the new estimate is, we missed it by 1.8 billion. it's going to be 1.8 billion less than we thought. or somehow the office space is going to cost more. i think as stewards of the taxpayer dollars, we've got to have a better handle from you on where the money is going to go. so that's -- i mean, other members might have questions as well. but i did want to bring that up, because i think that's something that we're going to have to really work through. >> sure, mr. chairman. and it's not that we don't know what the project scope is. it really is a eareflection of t wanting to overburden our request. if we had a project for full consolidation as we do now, it will have a large burden on our other projects, as this will. but it's still a high priority project. the idea was for the exchange to offset the cost overall and
10:07 pm
offset what we would have to request and how we are actually staging the project. but we're talking in terms of where we are today, full consolidation and requirements very much reflective of where this project is today. >> and just -- that was your idea, it was a great idea. but it wasn't based -- doesn't sound like it's based on reality, unless we can find out more about where these apprais l appraisals are and all those kinds of things. i think we're concerned about that. >> some pundits say it's very easy to confuse some members of congress. this may be an example of where we're in a sense of being easily confused. it's just very confusing. we're trying to get to the bottom of it. based on your budget request, it seems that in addition to the 1.5 billion in appropriations, gsa will still need to give the
10:08 pm
hooufr building to the developer. last year's hearing, you would not tell the committee how much the building was appraised for. but there's no way for us to analyze your appropriation needs without knowing what you and the developer are assuming the hoover building is worth. can we get the current appraised amount today? >> the current appraised amount is actually from an old appraisal. as part of this process, we will do an appraisal of the project. but in term of both the estimates and costs that are going -- the estimates that are going into the project, it is much better situation for the government to be in to wait for responses from the developers. before we are talking about any of the numbers and getting through awards. ultimately, we have three developers who are competing. they're running estimates on the various sites, as well as the overall project, as well as the value they will give us on hoover and to talk about those numbers as a part in an open setting really will undermine
10:09 pm
our efforts. >> okay, except for the military, the we usually like to get the information. i'm not going to press you on that. could you at least give an idea of the appraisal value to our staff at the minimum? i mean, they're sworn to secrecy. >> we'll definitely follow up with the staff. and again, it really is just the making sure we get the best deal out of it that we can. >> i understand that. but the chairman has to respond to people, or to members who for their own reasons and for their believes don't believe in spending certain amounts of
10:10 pm
money. i, on the other hand, want to be helpful in investing in the future as they are to. so you don't help us by telling us. i'm trying to be helpful here. can you at least tell us in private so that we have an idea of what we're dealing with. it doesn't matter what the administration is. we need to make sure we're getting the best price for the government for the hoover building. is there a chance the building is being undervalued as part of this exchange and would bring in a higher price if sold on its own? >> i think what's unique about this exchange in this process overall and part of what's brought the interests to the
10:11 pm
table is the fact that hoover itself is on pennsylvania avenue and, you know, it's america's main street. and ultimately to be able to have access to that property, i think it's part of what makes the package overall attractive. so taking the exchange out would have an effect, i think, on the project overall. >> it might be that i don't pay attention to what the chairman is asking. why is the developer getting the building? i come from a city where the developer is always getting people -- people think the developers are getting more than they should. why is the developer getting the building? refresh us again. why what is the developer giving us in return for getting the building? >> part of utilizing the exchange tool, we're giving the building itself, the hoover building in exchange for a new building that will service as
10:12 pm
the headquarters for fbi. >> and are the fbi and department of homeland security headquarters being treated the same? specifically, i want to know what the gsa request is going to be used for, versus the agency's request. my understanding is that gsa provided an appropriation used for the interior. is that the same with the fbi's headquarters? >> it is the same. the requests that are before you and fbi's request is for construction. >> okay. i'm sure you have some questions. i did learn something with the chairman. i thought america's main street was river avenue where yankee stadium was located, but i guess not. >> michigan in chicago? i should have stopped while i was ahead.
10:13 pm
>> i do represent the heartland, the main street of the whole country. you're welcome to come at anytime. welcome to the committee. appreciate your testimony today. i wanted to ask you about your understanding of the gs a's role of the banister federal complex in kansas city, which is a former facility that's closed. i want to know about where it's going. i first want to talk about where it's been. if you're aware that banister federal complex in kansas city made a variety of othings. they made airplane engines in world war ii, but later they began making components for nuclear weapons. and after many folks dedicated their career there, we came up -- they became aware that they were exposed to significant amounts of radioactive material. there's been some $55 million paid out to these workers at a former gsa facility. but the vast majority are frustrated they haven't been paid. some live in my district, some
10:14 pm
live in emanuel cleaver's district in kansas city, missouri. the types of claims that have been uncompensated are pretty significant. you have hundreds of people with skin cancer, female breast cancer, asthma, kidney cancer, bladder cancer. the list goes on and on and on. so i know this is a real tragedy that occurred here. these constituents are coming to me asking why their claims haven't been paid. only a fraction have been paid. can you provide me any information about what the gs a's role was in that situation? in terms of informing them what they might be exposed to? and what are the general policies today in terms of materials that could affect their health? >> yes, congressman. thank you for the question. this has obviously been an ongoing item for the agency and one that we will continue to
10:15 pm
address as concerns are raised. my understanding, and i spent just a little bit of time with this item is that we did have situations in which there were individuals who were concerned about illnesses related to the environmental health of the location. at this point, gsa has not found there's a connection between the environmental health of the gsa, but we continue to will be open to listening to any requests brought forward. but at this stage, we don't have any that we have identified that there was an illness and the relation of the illness that it was connected to the environmental health of the footprint managed by gsa. >> you're saying the facilities weren't managed by the gsa? >> no, the footprint that's part of gs a's footprint.
10:16 pm
there's another agency -- >> so what was the portion that gsa was responsible for? >> i don't know the property well enough, as i sit here, to talk about specifics of the separation of the site itself. but there is a portion of the envelope that is gsa and a portion that's managed by another agency. >> and to your knowledge, there's no overlap in terms of individuals that would be exposed to radioactive material that would be gsa employees or gsa-controlled space? >> not to my knowledge, as i sit here. but we will definitely work with your staff and work very closely with any concerns that have been raised to your attention as well. i would like to deal with those. >> i just have hundreds of constituents in my district that feel like their claims aren't being heard. many of them suffering from devastating cancers. 554 of them are deceased. many of their claims have been denied.
10:17 pm
my heart breaks for these folks and i want to make sure the government is doing them justice and doing them right. i would like your help to advocate for these workers to ensure that they were -- are being property compensated. i guess my follow-up is, two follow-ups. what are the measures that the j gsa is going to take going forward to make sure these types of things don't occur going forward. what there's a time line for clean-up of the facility for disposal. >> and just to be clear, there are items that need to investigate any items that are brought to our attention.
10:18 pm
we will talk through the aspects of the site. really the environmental health of the employees that work there and the safety of the employees is something that's of high concern for us. as we continue to do with each of our sites, we watch and monitor closely. try to ensure that we have an understanding of any vulnerabilities there and follow up as appropriately. but we will definitely ensure that whatever steps are necessary here to respond to your constituents specifically and the project overall that we continue to do that. >> i appreciate that.
10:19 pm
we need to make sure we do everything we can to make sure that doesn't happen and make sure they're aware of it. protect them them and when things do go wrong and we have health jut comes, we need to compensate and make it right. i yield back, mr. chairman. >> thank you. >> thank you, mr. chairman, i strongly agree with those remarks. ms. roth, i understand your concern about sharing the appraisal numbers with the 17 people watching on c-span right now. >> let's talk about something we do want to know about. >> i saw that gao had found issues with the database. questions of reliability. i understand huge database and conflicted information coming from different sources. but it also raised questions about the property reductions and the associated cost savings.
10:20 pm
can you talk about that and how serious that problem is and what you're doing to overcome it? >> sure. just to separate the two and the real property database as you point out is does have a lot of sources to pull from in terms of improofing the integrity and quality of that data to the extent of ensuring that very senior level of individuals in those agencies are seeing the data as it's being submitted, as well as doing some inventory dropdowns, as well as smart assessments of information that is entered into the database from year to year. this is something we're rolling out this year. if the square footage, for example, on a property is drastically different from one year to next, the database would flag the agency to deal with
10:21 pm
those discrepancies. when it comes to disposal itself, however, we have more accuracy around the actual activity that's occurring. so when we're actually going through a disposal process with an agency, we're spending more time hands on with that property itself. and so it can confirm the disposal activity and what we're actually disposing and the savings therein. >> data available in the federal real property profile is not available to the public, not available online. i guess there's summer reports, which are kind of excel spread sheets. i'm not sure anybody in the government can put a summation on this and what their value is. make it more available to the public.
10:22 pm
>> yes, sir. i whole heartedly agree. we are working with properties under gs a's management to make sure how we make that data set available. we can sort of hover over the locations and get a pretty good snapshot of data as well as get more information. we want to be a resource for federal agencies as they work to make data more available and have formats and platforms they can work with pretty quickly. let me ask you to touch on one thing quickly. gsa helps federal workers in access to child care facilities, especially here in dc. we're hearing long waiting lines and exorbitant costs. we hear people making career
10:23 pm
decisions and family decisions based on the fact that there's no affordable childcare. your thoughts on this? >> i would fw happy to follow up with your office regarding what role we play and if there's anything we can do to support even the extent of information. as a mother of a young child myself, the idea of not having child care that is affordable or easy and accessible, i can understand is very problematic. we will do everything we can to support that effort. >> have you heard at all from staff, workers and other people about what the lists are, the costs. >> i can't say i have directly. but i will follow up.
10:24 pm
but just so you understand, we're pretty much in the dark, if you come in and say we've got a building that's worth x dollars and we're going to build a new building that's worth x dollars, that sounds like a fair trade. but but somewhere we've got to know the numbers and know where you missed it by $1.8 billion. if you sell a building for $2 billion and you build a building that's $2 billion, that works. but if there's a $2 billion discrepancy, that means a, the building you had wasn't worth what you thought it was or the building you're going to build, you can't build for what you thought you could build. we've got to know that, particularly when you walk in and say we need another $1.8 billion to finish our project but we don't have any other numbers.
10:25 pm
as soon as we can get that, it will make it a whole lot easier for us. >> we will continue to work closely with the committee. we're asking for your support and want you to feel confident about this effort. we'll definitely look for you to continue to follow up with you and have discussions. absolutely, i understand the position the committee is in.
10:26 pm
how does that work and why is that mandatory versus discretionary? as you're aware last year, out of that discussion and out of that evaluation, it was clear that part of the major need for federal agencies was in the area of i.t. legacy and supporting the replacement of i.t. legacy. the highest cost is in that upfront cost. is agencies can apply to a payback over a five-year period, the cost of the investment
10:27 pm
overall. sometimes agencies are trying to deal with a legacy issue in terms of the agency itself when actually the solution actually may be something that either multiple agencies can utilize or multiple agencies have already solved for. so we are seeing it both from both perspectives, both the businesser is prize perspective as well as see and report what agencies are faced with for a regular basis. the legislation involving this request will go to your members in the next couple of weeks.
10:28 pm
>> are you going to have to hire more staff to administer this fund? >> yes. there would be additional staff. it will be to evaluate the investments itself. >> would that be included in the $3.1 billion? >> yes. >> i can't remember what the number, it's billions of dollars, and we have mr. donovan say if they coordinated all of the buying of the computer equipment, they may be able to save as much as 50%. is that something you talked about, how this would work? gs a's role, it makes sense for
10:29 pm
this to be coordinated with gsa. how do you decide we want this $3 billion. you're not really appropriating that. how did you decide to put that as a part of mandatory spending. >> ultimately, since it is a one-time request, we have it come forward and as a revolving fund. >> it just seems like it would be one way to use mandatory funding to circumvent the regulatory process.
10:30 pm
you're saying $3 billion comes from mandatory. that's something you have to think about, too. >> it's amazing how we always end up talking about computers and i.t. i don't know if i was being sarcastic or profound when i suggested doing the rollout of obama care. all they had to do was go to a college dorm and get a couple of kids who would think through the problem in about 30 seconds. one of my issue has been purchasing versus leasing. i think our government spends too much money leasing. and at the end of the day, they own nothing.
10:31 pm
this committee made an places that we need in our government. no purchases at all. has that changed at all? >> i will say the committee support of consolidation funds has been a tremendous effort for our portfolio overall. we have been able to see savings year over year since receiving that effort as well as the reduction of footprints in familiar. once you maximize the properties owned by the federal government. the funding committee has given
10:32 pm
us, we have one point -- i had it written down. 1.4 square feet savings of reduction in square footage. over 100 million in savings on lease avoid answer. and that's having a definite impact on the bottom line. is. >> i represent the bronx which has a lot of folks that were born in the territories. does gsa make a special effort through staffing patterns or problematic patterns to make sure the territories are being treated as fairly as the constitutional allows? which is thoroughly fair? there's many cases you'll hear when they're waiting for a building, you know, three or
10:33 pm
four times three or four times the amount the state has to wait. why not at the same time or something close to it. is. >> we've h discussions in puert rico. we've needed to ensure, and we're in a much better place now that we have boots on the ground. as well as hands-on efforts with any of the projects in the territories.
10:34 pm
we need to keep the same discipline across our portfolio in expectation of turnaround and project management and schedule. >> i would appreciate that. and you would be not surprised, you would be happy to to agree that we want people treated equal pi. in the omnibus bill. the gsa with the fiscal year, you're asking for 17% less. >> fy-2016.
10:35 pm
how are you managing that many projects? fy-2016 bill. and did they impact what you requested in 2017. we must invest in infrastructure across the country and the territories, but i also don't want to set you up a failure by not giving you the staff to manage all of your projects. >> the fy-16 budget in the area that was mentioned earlier for us to meet only sof our partner needs. the we're executing on time and
10:36 pm
on budget. we are able to articulate to the committee where the needs are and what's driving our programming going forward and to ensure and manage what we can see coming forward. >> i know we've touched on it. we've had a tremendous opportunity as an agency, how we're managing i.t. in terms of having had a consolidation that
10:37 pm
we did internally as well as establishing what we refer to as investment review board to look at a large level i.t. investments. really it's for us to support other agencies who are moving in the same direction, especially as the outgrowth, which which was an important effort this committee was involved with. we're seeing the dividends from that consolidation activity. as well as being able to support other agencies as well. >> thank you. and i apologize, mr. chairman. i was looking at my clock and i thought it was going down. it was actually going up. i know, it sounds like the federal budget, but i don't want to hear that comment. >> no comment. >> mr. yoder is recognized. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i'm not going to take that lay-up. i'm going to go back to the administrator. i note in your biography that you have a history of being sort of tech savvy. and i think you were top 50
10:38 pm
women in tech at one point. i noticed an interview you did at one time where you said you had an early commodore 64 and you used to code your own video games. that's pretty neat. you have a love of tech. so i want to talk to you about the real property profile. and i want to associate myself with comments from my kcolleagu mr. quigley. we've been bipartisan in our efforts to resolve the concerns that we've had. that continues to be -- there is no -- we have struggled to find ways to define property the federal government owns and all of the property. a secondary issue that not all the properties are with the gsa. you have two separate properties there. and we really don't have the ability to tell the public what we own, what's vacant, what isn't vacant.
10:39 pm
that's ied immediately, i know it's posz word protected. when i go through something like this, first of all, there's billions of dollars of property. is there a mobile app that would alou constituents to drive around once they look at things? is it user prendly? is it comprehensive? is it fully imp implemented in a way that's used today to make decisions that are informed that will allow taxpayers to move forward.
10:40 pm
have we met those standards? >> we have been working diligently to meet those standards with the dat that that we're putting forward for gsa in particular. in terms of making it easy accessible. if that's not working out, i will definitely have it. >> there's no description on here. it doesn't tell you, i guess your e-mail and ask them how to do it. it doesn't say members of public on this, at least, how you do it. i completely could be missing something. >> that's not as productive as we want to be. we want people to be able to access our data in the way that they're used to with all other data in the private sector. >> why is it even log-in pass word protected. the whole point is to make it accessible to the public.
10:41 pm
>> the fact that it's pass word protected is surprising me. i will ensure that -- real property >> yeah. and we have -- what i'm used to seeing is the place you can see -- especially for gs a's data, the data itself as well as a map that's interactive. the database that is utilized, a representation of all of government, i don't know if that's password protected. >> i prougt this up three years now. we're still not getting there.
10:42 pm
what has gsa done to help with this? >> we actually have been able to achieve spatial mapping. it's included in the real proper property database that's not available in the same format. has the gsa sought po build the best mapping system? or is it doing this internally and not using private sector? >> we have consulted with private sector. i'm not sure at what point the break did happen. i think we met with some members from your recommendation at our last hearing. there was a sitdown with the team there as well. we have engaged the private sector from an expertise perspective where needed. and also managing internally as well. >> it seems like we have a long way to go.
10:43 pm
i just know given your tech background that if you're on the outside of this looking in, you would say not acceptable. the private sector would have a had this years ago. maybe try to repurpose them, saving us money. whether you're a liberal or a conservative, none of us like to see idle property that could be put to use or sold. it's a rare bipartisan thing that everyone wants. i'm just asking you again to consult the private sector to build a really solid system. i know it's something -- you know what i'm talking about. it will look like we're not here, particularly the fact that it's not even accessible to the public. i just hope if we meet in this committee again, we'll have great news and this will be something that the gsa can accomplish that we can tout, hey, government will get things
10:44 pm
effective. you have a tech savvy leader, he's going to make it happen. so let's get it done. >> we appropriated $900 billion for nine new courthouses around the country. there are different stages of development. some are ready to go. some are in planning and design. when we ask questions about the hoover building and the cost of new construction, it raises concerns about what kind of handle does the agency have about building nine new courthouses. how do we help you make sure that those monies, nine different courthouses, nine different sites, different stages of development, how can we be assured that there won't be any cost overruns or that those numbers are -- that you
10:45 pm
requested, those are pretty real numbers in terms of getting those projects done on time within the budget? >> what's been very important and will continue to be important there is working very closely with the courts there have been some projects that were currently pending ensuring that we're bringing those forward to see how current they are. we are focused on the requirements that they're really what's needed to meet the mission. i think working with closely with the court to ensure those dollars go as far as they can is really a priority for us. your support, both around funding that, as well as keeping each of the projects in align. making sure that we get the most out of each project is very beneficial. >> is there a prospectus on each one of the courthouses?
10:46 pm
each project that you could track? >> there will be a spend plan coming forward in the next few weeks. i think mid april is the timing and that will be the outline of each of the projects until all of those pieces. >> where did you get the $948 million to start with? >> it was based on the original estimates for the projects. >> okay. so we'll see these new prospectus on each one of them and hopefully they'll match up with what the original estimates were? >> yes, sir. >> and you'll work with the judiciary and the u.s. marshal to make sure they have the right space and all that stuff. >> that's right pop one last question about the $35 million that we had some design money. i guess it was called a federal civilian cybersecurity campus. i know that's been talked about and finally we put $3r5 million last year. this year, there's not a request for that campus. i don't see it anywhere in the five-year plan. what happened to that $35
10:47 pm
million? where did it get spent? or will it be spent? and where does all that fit in long range? >> the project is one that we continue to work with partner agencies to understand requirements. again, i feel like i said requirements a few times today. i apologize. but they are a key part of us defining the scope of our projects and what will be programmed as a part of the project 37s and that really has a strong impact on what's needed and necessary, as well as the timing of it. so we continue to work with those partner agencies. and once we get a better sense of what the requirements are and the programming for that activity, then we'll be able to come back with the request. those funds that you've awarded at this point would be held for that project. >> so are they being used no uh? -- now? >> what are you doing with that $35 million? >> oh, currently what we're doing with the project overall is working with the agencies to scope out the -- >> but it's not in the five-year plan.
10:48 pm
there's going to be a campus. but so you have $35 million last year. you didn't ask for any more money this year. and i thought that was the planning and design money. but then if you don't need more money this year and you don't it in your five-year plan and we're spending a lot of money on the department of homeland security and fbi building, where does this new cybersecurity campus fit in? >> well, we'll have a better sense going forward where it will fit in. >> what are you going to do with the $35 million? >> we would use it for planning of this project. but first once we receive the requirements. >> where do you get the requirements? >> from the agencies, from the partner agencies that would be present on the cyber campus. >> so you work -- who is that? >> it's a number of agencies i would hesitate to name. i know i can't name them all as i'm sitting here. but we can definitely follow up with the staff.
10:49 pm
but it was a number of agencies that would have a presence. and part of it is really the question of what would need to be there, and in light, in some ways, in some respect of the projects that you did reference, sir, those would obviously have an offsetting effect potentially for the requirement and programming of the cybercampus. but those are the pieces we're trying to figure out. >> so in the planning and the design, you're really not there yet? that $35 million for planning and design, you're not spending that yet because you haven't figured out exactly -- >> we're not able to spend those dollars yet until we nail down the requirements? >> okay. it probably would be better to have a project and then say here's the project and here's how much we need to plan it and design it as opposed to saying we need some money for planning and design on a project we haven't finalized yet. >> and i believe that it's been some shifting efforts that has gwynn us -- i believe the project was in a different place last year, which is what brought us forward with the request. but as we get a better sense of
10:50 pm
the requirements, then we would be in a position to go forward. >> mr. serrano, any more questions? year's massive breach at the office of personnel management, the department of the interior, there's rightfully more scrutiny regarding government's ability to keep information safe. efforts are on the way to strengthen those systems, including the gsa's own budget request to start a new i.t. fund. i have some concern that in gsa's budget, you want 5 million to establish the unified shared services management office that will promote consolidation of government systems and information. shouldn't we ensure these systems have the highest level of security before we further consolidate government? government efficiency is a goal, but so is security and
10:51 pm
information. >> yes, sir. and i appreciate the observation. security with our systems is very key. in a shared services office, stood up to support both exists offices that are providing shared services as well as those who may beek seeking to go to shared services. so this team in particular is really supporting as we look to go to shared services, all the requirements of any symptom is being met, including security requirements. and as we've learned over the past year, we continue to enhance from our learning the security parameters will and are changing on systems as well, and that would be integrated in terms of the information that this office would share with anyone seeking to go into shared service systems. >> that refers to your office, gsa being involved with other agencies in the sharing. do you think as it stands now, you might have to hold back and wait for a while before we go
10:52 pm
further, or you think you're ready to go with consolidating? >> the -- and just to be clear, gsa would not be the ones con do solidating any of these systems or services. our team would help with the analysis and evaluations and recommendations of which provider to meet the need of any particular agency. so we're looking at and gsa has provided shared services in the past such as financial management services, which we've dive divested from, as well as hr services. but this office is looking at shared services across federal government and making either recommendations, or agencies who are looking to go to a shared service, or is there shared service providers who are looking to upgrade or divest from those, supporting those efforts. we've found our shared services has been in place for savings
10:53 pm
for agencies, but having the support come from a central place would be beneficial for everyone. >> well, i have no further questions, mr. chairman. i just want to thank you for your service to our country and for the issues that you deal with on a daily basis. >> thank you, congressman, for your support. >> i'm not thanking you -- we're having problems every day. i'm thanking you for dealing with them. >> yes. >> thank you. >> do you have any closing comments? he rests his case. let me close by thanking you as well. and in particular, thank you, administrator and your staff, for personally get involved in a project down in jacksonville, florida, which was a coast guard customs and border patrol project. it's been going on since 2007. there were lots and lots of problems, but i'm told that within the next couple weeks, the building's going to open. the coast guard will move in, the border patrol folks will move in.
10:54 pm
i got involved in 2013. so i'm just as excited as you are to see this project come to fruition. so you're certainly welcome to come down to sunny florida and view the new project. i plan on looking at it myself, first chance i get. but again, thank you for your commitment to making that happen. and again, thank you for being here today, and this hearing is adjourned. >> thank you. >> the head of u.s. customs and border protection will be before another house appropriations subcommittee tuesday to outline the 2017 budget request which accounts for nearly 20% of the homeland security's total budget, live at 10:00 a.m. eastern here on c-span3. later in the day, fbi director james comey testifies along with a representative from apple at a house judiciary hearing. they'll talk to lawmakers about encryption technology and its implications for security and
10:55 pm
privacy. this hearing coming after a federal judge in new york sided with apple by denying the justice department a court order that would force the company to bypass the security code of a criminal defendant's iphone. that's live at 1:00 p.m. eastern, also here on c-span3. >> so many of my former books were horizontal studies. many countries across a whole region. the ends of the earth covering a minimum of six countries. here i look at one country in depth. and i use it to explore great themes. i think, great themes.holocaust vladimir putin. romanians speaking moldova have a longer border than poland. it's to study the legacy of empires. >> sunday night on q & a, robert
10:56 pm
kaplan, two cold wars and a 30-year journey through romania and beyond. he talks about the history of the balkan states and romaniinr struggle to gain democracy since the fall of communism. >> romania is an extremely corrupt country, because it had weak institutions that were very -- everything was based on bribe and double dealing. and what this shows is, this is nothing new. what's happening is that the romanian population has grown up and become far more sophisticated and is demanding clean government. it is its number one demand. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q & a. >> the state department's budget request for 2017 total $50 billion. secretary of state john kerry was on capitol hill last week, testifying on the proposal


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on