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JOINT COMMITTEE ON PRINTING
Congress of the United States
818 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING
December 15, 1993
The Honorable Vic Fazio
Dear Mr. Chairman:
The Joint Committee on Printing hereby transmits its budget estimate of $1,380,000 covering the operations and oversight activities of the Joint Committee for Fiscal Year 1995. Included within this letter is a presentation of activities and projects the Joint Committee has worked on within the past year and expects to continue during Fiscal Years 1994 and 1995.
Jurisdiction, Authority and Responsibilities
The Joint Committee on Printing is empowered under Title 44, United States Code, to act as the policymaker and overseer of printing, binding and distribution activities of the Federal Government, and functions as the "Board of Directors" for the Government Printing Office (GPO).
Section 103, Title 44, United States Code, gives the Joint Committee legislative authority to "...use any measures it considers necessary to remedy neglect, delay, duplication or waste in the public printing and binding and the distribution of Government publications". The Joint Committee has actively and aggressively followed this mandate by promoting the coordination of cost-effective and efficient printing and dissemination policies across all branches of the Government.
The Joint Committee on Printing has successfully carried out actions to control excessive printing costs within the Federal Government as is evidenced in Fiscal Year 1993, with over $46.2 million in savings achieved within all branches. We believe that there are significant additional cost savings that can be made particularly within the Executive Branch. Continued Congressional oversight into the management, production and dissemination of government information is essential if these savings are to be realized. However, it is also important that Congress continue to play a role in ensuring the public's right of access to the government information they have paid to create.
The Joint Committee has actively promoted arguments for the continuity of its Congressional authority, and has diligently exercised its oversight role of the Government
findings of the triennial GAO financial and management audits and other related issues. In a later hearing, the Department of Defense was again called to testify on the activities of the Defense Printing Service and the consolidation of printing services under its auspices. As mentioned in our letter last year, the Joint Committee began a review of Executive Branch printing plants and as a result of those analyses 38 plants have been dechartered or are in the process of being reviewed with $4,189,779 in identified savings to the Government.
The Joint Committee believes it has had an active and successful year and while it is not possible to predict the future outcome of the legislative proposals affecting this Committee and GPO, every effort will continue to be made to diligently carry out its responsibilities.
Establishment of Policy to Affect the Formulation of the Printing, Binding, and Distribution of Federal Publications
Reinforcing GPO's Role as the Primary Source for Government Printing
In Fiscal Year 1992, the Joint Committee on Printing sought and received further assistance in revised Legislative language to reinforce Government printing through GPO. Public Law 102-392, section 207, further clarified previous appropriations language by specifically prohibiting the obligation or expenditure of appropriated funds by any Executive Branch entity, with limited exceptions, to purchase any printing related to the production of Government publications unless the procurement is by or through the GPO. This language also prohibits intra-governmental procurement of printing other than through GPO.
While the section 207 language has been extremely helpful in re-emphasizing Federal printing through GPO, there have been difficulties in getting full compliance from the Executive Branch, particularly the General Services Administration and the Defense Printing Service. The Joint Committee provided all Departments and agencies with a letter of communication about the provisions of the new law and revised a portion of the Government Printing and Binding Regulations to reflect these changes. However, GSA claims they have authority to provide printing and duplicating services and so notified agencies that the law did not apply to their Agency. GSA's continued solicitation of other agency printing has created confusion and has resulted in unnecessary additional costs to agencies that have utilized GSA for printing requirements. The Defense Printing Service is also continuing to do some level of work for other agencies under the guise of a Memorandum of Understanding with GSA. Some of the agencies with Map and Chart requirements are also reluctant to comply with these statutory changes. In May 1993, JCP asked for an opinion from the Comptroller General to consider section 207, P.L. 102-392, and rule on whether GSA is exempt. GAO has not issued a ruling on this matter as of this date.
On May 11, 1993, the Members of the Joint Committee held the annual oversight
current financial status and the FY 1992 financial audit contracted by GAO to Arthur Andersen and Company. While GPO received a clean financial opinion, GAO auditors projected GPO's FY 1993 losses at between $11 and $13 million as compared to FY 1992 losses of $5 million. Among the recommendations made, Arthur Andersen suggested the redirection of procured printing to GPO's central plant as much as possible to increase the utilization of current committed costs in that area at prices competitive to the private sector. Acting Public Printer DiMario testified that GPO was experiencing losses in all of their printing and binding programs due to overstaffing and related costs, reduced revenue from Agency printing orders, the ongoing decline in the price of paper and increased in-house printing activities of other Federal agencies such as the General Services Administration, the Federal Prison Industries and primarily, the Defense Printing Service. The Acting Public Printer provided a general framework of measures he plans to take to stem the financial losses, including a 25 percent reduction in the management and administrative workforce. Testimony was received from Acting Public Printer Michael F. DiMario, representatives of Arthur Andersen Company and the labor unions.
Hearing on the Defense Printing Service and DoD's Consolidation of Printing
On July 15, 1993, the Joint Committee on Printing held a hearing to further examine activities of the Defense Printing Service - its size, cost comparisons of printing and duplicating services to those provided through the Government Printing Office, and the impact on private sector commercial printers. The Joint Committee on Printing received hundreds of letters from commercial printers in 1993, complaining of DPS' internalizing increasing amounts of printing work at much greater costs. A study conducted by GPO's Inspector General verified that the GPO could procure much of the DPS current workload (printing and duplicating) at savings averaging over 50 cents on the dollar. The General Accounting Office verified the results of this study in testimony at the hearing. It was learned in testimony from Admiral Robert M. Moore that restrictive language included within House and Senate Reports accompanying DoD's Appropriations Bill for the last two years had been ignored and that the Defense Printing Service was continuing to operate without heeding Congressional intent. Witnesses appearing were private sector commercial printers, representatives from the General Accounting Office, the Public Printer, GPO's Inspector General, and Admiral Robert M. Moore, Naval Supply Systems Command.
3. ICP Initiatives, Policies and Activities Affecting Executive Branch Printing Activities
The Joint Committee on Printing has continued to monitor and review Executive Branch printing activities and in Fiscal Year 1993, was able to effect over $43.2 million in cost savings due to the approval, denial or deferral of requests for Executive Branch in-house printing and/or duplicating equipment. We believe that our actions in promoting the use of new printing and publishing technology when it demonstrates cost savings and other significant benefits to the Government have substantially improved more effective management of information. Joint Committee staff actively work on a day-to-day basis with printing personnel from all branches of the government to establish dialogues for the