Pilot program would expedite auction of federal buildings

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) hopes to get rid of some of the government’s 14,000 unused buildings by creating a five-year pilot program to expedite their sale.

Under the proposal, which the House will consider today, the Office of Management and Budget and the General Services Administration would maintain a list of the top 15 high-value, unused federal property to auction off at fair market value. The list would be maintained on a rolling basis: as one property is sold another gets added.

The agencies and GSA would be reimbursed for administrative costs associated with the closures, and 98 percent of the remaining proceeds would be handed over to the Treasury. The other 2 percent would go to homeless assistance.

The bill omits properties that will be closed under the Base Closure and Realignment Act, property on Native American reservations, property that shouldn’t be sold for reasons of national security and Post Office facilities.

GSA would also be required to maintain a public list of all unused and under-used federal properties.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates the program would cost $2 million to implement over the five-year period.

More to read:

Approaches vary on selling excess U.S. property

Sale of federal buildings could be difficult

Senators introduce excess federal buildings bill

Bill to sell underused federal buildings advances

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