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Lankford’s Bill to Ensure We Reuse Excess Federal Property Moves to Full Senate

WASHINGTON, DC – Bipartisan legislation authored by Senators James Lankford (R-OK) and Gary Peters (D-MI)  to hold agencies more accountable to the public on how they reuse excess personal property has advanced in the Senate. The bill was advanced by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

“The federal government is the largest purchaser of goods in the world, but some of these goods go unused by agencies. These purchases include office supplies, equipment, and vehicles – all property that could be reused within the federal government,” said Peters. “My bipartisan bill would hold agencies more accountable by ensuring the use of pre-owned federal property, which would help save taxpayer dollars and limit waste.”

“This is not that hard. Use the stuff you already have before you buy more stuff. When federal agencies just buy more, before they use what we already have, it shows a lack of commitment to saving taxpayer dollars. The federal government is already the largest single buyer of goods and services in the world, so we need to prioritize good stewardship and effective use of property the government has already purchased,” said Lankford. “From paper clips to automobiles, Oklahoma families and businesses make decisions every day about how to use what they have before spending more money. We should always look for ways for the federal government to save more money and waste less time.”

Federally-owned personal property includes physical items such as office supplies, furniture, automobiles, and heavy machinery. The federal government is the largest purchaser of goods and services in the world, and this bill would ensure agencies are looking to excess property– available at no cost apart from any necessary transportation – before buying new products to save taxpayer dollars.

The Reuse Excess Property Actwould update existing requirements for agencies to report their excess personal property to the General Services Administration (GSA) by making those reports available to the public as well. This would help agency officials and taxpayers better understand the extent to which agencies are working to cut wasteful spending through the use of excess property. The bill would also require agencies to publicly report on their guidance on the use of excess personal property and designate an employee to be responsible for searching through available excess personal property for items that meet agency needs.