Why does a completely tax exempt organization voluntarily throw away billions of dollars by paying taxes on travel? I travel a lot for the Navy and detest that taxes for TDY travel expenses are charged to my government credit card. Though the Government Treasury will get the taxes back, for the Navy and the Program Office (PMA), those funds are lost. Those lost and unrecoverable funds, which can quickly add up to billions, ...more »
There is an agreement between GSA and DHS regarding Federal alarm monitoring: if the property is a GSA space or lease, the alarm monitoring is complimentary. This is not common knowledge. As such, working at the Denver MegaCenter, one of four MegaCenters in America, we are routinely advising agencies that they do not need to pay for monitoring and maintenance through companies like ADT and Siemens because the alarm ...more »
Despite presidential mandates to improve the sustainability of federal vehicle fleets, the cost of implementation is a major obstacle. To obtain vehicles like the Nissan Leaf or Chevy Volt, GSA charges agencies a substantial surcharge of $10,000 or more per vehicle in addition to the monthly lease cost. Furthermore, procuring and installing an electric vehicle charging station is equally as expensive – upwards of $15,000. ...more »
My office recently upgraded office chairs, and gave us a list of alowable chairs from GSA. Many of the newer, more active chairs were not listed, so I purchased a yogaball chair online and had it shipped to my office. I love it, it keeps my posture in check and I feel way more productive and healthy. Best of all, instead of the $400-$500 cost of a nice, supportive chair from the GSA list, it was under $100 including shipping! ...more »
The USDA, Agriculture Research Service maintains a large fleet of vehicles which average less then 1,500 miles a year each. Recommend each ARS location that maintains more then 6 vehicles be required to consolidate their vehicle inventory so as to ensure vehicle usage averages at least 12,000 miles a year. Purchasing and having vehicles sit idle is a waste of limited government money. Vehicles that site idle also ...more »
Patient have difficulty understanding, remembering, and following technical, confusing medication instructions, and so may miss, double up on, or otherwise miss-take medications. When patients fail to improve as expected, clinicians may unnecessarily increase, duplicate, or change medications. Resultant poor patient health and avoidable, prolonged, more complicated hospital admissions lead to poor health outcomes and ...more »
Laptop computers do not need replacement every two years. Extend one year, upgrade current laptops and save!
Our agency received new CISCO phones this year - $600 each. Right after, we were offered "soft phones", which are $5 for the software and $70 for a really nice headset.
Unless strict justification and need is demonstrated, only vehicles with at least 25 mpg should be allowed.
GSA vehicles are cycled for new when the mileage reaches around 60000. Given the improved reliability and high cost of new vehicles, the mileage should be increased to at least 100,000 miles before a new vehicle is ordered.
Problem: While GSA’s government-wide travel policies permit Federal employees to take advantage of airlines’ retail sale prices, because the employee must assume risks of cancellation or change fees, employees rarely take advantage of sale ticket prices which are far below the refundable GSA City Pair program fare prices. While city pair fares save as much as 70 percent, that savings is measured against retail fully ...more »
At the Suitland Federal Center, the grassy fields that could be used for exercise, walking, and sports are OFF LIMITS per GSA. There is no explanation as to why there are DO NOT WALK signs on the grassy fields. Employees are forced to jog and play sports in the harder to get to and less safe surrounding neighborhood, which takes more time away from exercise. Take the 'DO NOT WALK' signs off the fields and open them ...more »
Nearly every town located near any post/camp/station/base has a large number of DoD offices located in civilian/GSA office space. Rather than paying rents for these properties, all DoD agency offices located within 30 miles of a post/camp/station/base should be required to re-locate to those locations. Not only would this reduce overhead costs for such off-post facilities, but the security posture of these organizations ...more »
Government agencies are keep GSA afloat by paying more for their leases through GSA. In FY10 over 1/2 of the Federal Building Fund revenues came from 5 top federal agencies.(DOJ $1.6B, DHS $1.6B, FJ $1.1B, DOT $0.8B, and SSA $0.7B) GSA had a net revenue of $548M in FY10. Even when when an agency gets a lease on the economy, they go through GSA and pay a percentage of overhead to keep GSA afloat. If that same agency ...more »
Utilize strategic in-sourcing to issue Personal Identity Verification (PIV) cards to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) using the General Services Administration (GSA) USAccess Program to realize over $495 million in cost avoidance over 7 years, provide superior customer service, and attain an unmatched level of efficiency in the issuance of PIV cards. GSA re-engineered the issuance process of PIV cards, which ...more »
More government services move online every day, yet all this effort is wasted if a website is poorly designed. By doing frequent, simple product tests on websites, smart organizations are able to locate and fix usability problems that frustrate customers and cause them to fail. Well-designed sites require fewer people to answer customer service questions, and help customers complete their tasks in a single visit. The ...more »
As fuel costs continue to go up, the cost for shipping goods is increasing. I suggest establishing Government wide contracts that could provided suitable reduced cost shipping. For example, UPS has a account established for the Government that has the ability to save 50 - 80% over commercial shipping through UPS. Specific example a pallet weighing 350 lbs shipped from DC/MD/VA commercially through UPS to Miami FL, ...more »
We have a number of GSA fleet vehicles that are gas guzzlers. Now that hybrid and natural gas technology are available with a number of American car dealerships, I would like to recommend that all government agencies with fleet vehicles upgrade to more environmentally friendly vehicles when the contracts are up. This way, we help to save gas usage (saving the American taxpayers money), as well as helping the environment. ...more »
There is very little need for GSA exclusive contracts with airline companies that charge the government extraordinary amount for the same flight. Government workers can book their own flights online for hundreds, even thousands less. For example, flights from DAY to DCA are about $1300 while it can be found on Kayak or Expedia for less than $300. Most travel are not cancelled, cancellation fees should be deductible ...more »
As the number of GSA vehicles in our fleet grows, more and more time and fuel is spent shuttling these vehicles in town to an authorized service center for the most basic of needs. We are not according to contract authorized to use shop supplies, equipment, of facilities to do the simplest items of maintenance and upkeep. It seems counter productive when a vehicle needs a headlamp, windshield wiper blade, oil change, ...more »
I am walking a fine line here and I don’t want to disclose part numbers and suppliers but can do so upon request. The prices in this example are real but the suppliers name and part numbers have been altered for confidentiality. Note: GSA Advantage is a required source of supply that has priority over commercial sources as referenced in FAR 8.002 Example 1: Received quote from supplier XYZ for 10 pieces of part AAA ...more »
Billions are spent each year by federal government agencies on IT infrastructure to run their online (and outdated) legacy retail efforts. Now, in today's tough economic times, efforts to update these systems may never happen due to high costs. As an alternative, utilizing private systems. For ex., Amazon.com Inc's cloud computing unit might provide one logical alternative. Amazon Web Services started small in 2006 by ...more »
The mileage rates for private motorcycles (definitely) and private airplanes (possibly) should be reduced, and the policy under which they are used or reimbursed should be reevaluated and changed. As of now if you take a personally operated vehicle (POV; i.e your personal car or truck) when a government vehicle (GOV) is available, you are rightly reimbursed for mileage at a smaller rate (something like 19 cents versus ...more »
The Government pays contractors billions of dollars to do installation projects that could be accomplaished by assets that are already in place! I work in the Telecommunications field and have deployed twice to Iraq and Afghanistan to install communications on bases there. I also went to Iraq for 1 year as a contractor. I made more money in the one year as a contractor (over 170k) than I did the other 2 combined! And ...more »
GSA and GAO have been arguing over this issue for years. It is a waste of taxpayer funds for agencies to pay for coffee breaks, "snacks", or other food and beverages with appropriated funds. This happens all of the time using the purchase card on the grounds that these are not "meals" and are for panelists or "visitors" on technical travel status. Remove this loophole in the FTR, issue mandatory guidance on the subject, ...more »
The National Park Service currently pays millions of dollars to print park maps for visitors. Ironically, they just fall apart after being used. They are also cumbersome to keep safely stored and away from the weather. My suggestion is for the National Park Service to offer visitors the option of downloading park maps onto their phones/pc in advance of their trip, or when they enter the park. Since most phones now ...more »