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GAO Report Highlights BRAC Recommendations with High Cost Overruns

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  • July 5, 2012
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Fourteen BRAC recommendations, out of a total of 182, accounted for 72 percent of the $14.1 billion increase in one-time costs needed to carry out the 2005 round of base closures, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Total implementation costs rose from $21 billion originally estimated by the BRAC Commission in 2005 to $35.1 billion, with increased construction costs the primary culprit. Higher construction costs resulted from additional building projects and additions to planned projects deemed necessary after implementation started, GAO found. Requirements changed because the information DOD provided the BRAC Commission assumed that adequate capacity was available to accommodate relocating activities in existing facilities, and that the condition of those facilities would be acceptable and suitable for the realigned mission.

Other factors behind the jump in implementation costs included increased operation and maintenance costs, such as for furnishings to outfit new and renovated buildings and information technology needed to equip additional facilities, and higher environmental restoration costs, according to the report.

The recommendations with the largest dollar increases in one-time costs include:

  • realign Walter Reed Army Medical Center to Bethesda National Naval Medical Center, Md., and to Fort Belvoir, Va. ($1.7 billion increase);
  • close National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency leased locations and realign others at Fort Belvoir ($1.4 billion);
  • close Fort Monmouth, N.J. ($1.1 billion);
  • establish San Antonio Regional Medical Center and realign enlisted medical training to Fort Sam Houston, Texas ($953 million); and
  • realign maneuver training to Fort Benning, Ga. ($915 million).

Detailed descriptions of each of the 14 recommendations are included in the GAO report. It also includes tables listing all 182 recommendations ranked by their latest estimated cost to implement, the BRAC commission’s cost estimate, 20-year net present value and net recurring savings.

Read the story in the Washington Post.

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