Senator Carper Works to Curb Wasteful Practices for Federal Real Property Management

Today at the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) hearing “FASTA Implementation and Optimizing the Efficient Use of Federal Property,” U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del), a senior member of the committee, emphasized the lessons learned from the implementation of the Federal Assets Sale Transfer Act (FASTA). While FASTA works to limit wasteful practices, Senator Carper noted the ways in which this legislation should be reevaluated to optimize the federal government’s ability to dispose of excess and underutilized property.

Senator Carper illustrated the pandemic’s impact on disposal and space utilization challenges:

“The federal assets under FASTA were signed into law in 2016. But the COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed the needs for office space due to increased hybrid and remote work options. We’re hearing from cities all over the country where they have office space that they used to rent robustly, that a lot of [offices are] thinning out and it’s causing a hardship for city governments to meet their budgets and raise their budgets. It’s critical that the agencies accurately report space utilization needs in order to efficiently dispose of unused and underused properties.”

Senator Carper has been a leader on government transparency to reduce wasteful federal spending and ensure the federal government acts as a good steward of American taxpayer dollars. As the former Chairman of HSGAC, he has been an active part of the Senate response to the GAO’s High Risk List, specifically passing legislation to address improper payments and fraud. Just last month during a HSGAC hearing with Comptroller General Gene Dodaro, Senator Carper urged his colleagues and the GAO to continue identifying new solutions to reduce fraud and waste. 

A video of Senator Carper’s questions at today’s hearing can be found here.