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did not pay any more, as far as having to pay the contractor more, but we found the construction could be dragged out for a long period of time which ultimately costs the taxpayers money; and we tried to sort of plug that loophole, and I wonder if there is anywhere else that you think that would be helpful.
Mr. TRANDAHL. The precedent that I think that example came from was the Botanic Garden, and subsequently, we benefited because the pages' residence hall followed that experience. And so I think our contract at the moment is pretty good. But when construction begins on the Visitor's Center, clearly that is something that has to be articulated and understood and built into the contracts.
Mr. WAMP. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. TAYLOR. Yes.
Mr. WAMP. I believe Mr. Eagen may tell us, because I have seen this firsthand, we got rolled a lot more on construction projects than we do on any of these vendor contracts. If people do not actually adhere to the agreements that we have with vendors, they do not get paid. And so we actually have held the line pretty well on saving taxpayer dollars, on getting rolled by vendors versus construction people.
Mr. EAGEN. The Chairman has an excellent point. The key is writing the contract in a clear manner that performance standards are spelled out in such a way that they are enforceable. The construction example is one. We did the same thing in the restaurant contract. There are quality assurance standards that that contractor has to meet, and the House has the option, if they do not meet those standards, that we could cancel the contract.
Mr. TAYLOR. Thank you, gentlemen, we appreciate your service. Mr. Hoyer has submitted some questions that I will ask you to respond to for the record.
[The questions and responses follow:]
QUESTIONS FOR THE RECORD FROM MR. HOYER
Question. What is the status of your "LIMS" project, for which you are to receive supplemental funding this year?
Response. The LIMS project, as approved by the Committee on House Administration has four stages:
(1) LIMS Project Definition and Acquisition Plan, which was completed by the House and approved by the Committee on House Administration in July 2000, and outlines the successive stages of the project consistent with House Systems Development Life Cycle Policy;
(2) Requirements Analysis and Recommended Technical Solution containing three tasks (Contractor)
(3) Independent Validation and Verification (Contractor); and (4) System Integration and Implementation.
The Clerk awarded a contract in September to KPMG Consulting for Task 1 of Stage 2, Requirements Analysis (Functional and Technical) and Additional Code Evaluation for a total not-to-exceed contract price of $881,690. Task 2, Definitions of Alternatives, and Task 3, Detailed Alternatives Analysis, are reserved as options to be exercised at the sole discretion of the House. The agreed upon project plan established June 30, 2001 as the termination date for the completion of Task 1. The vendor has invoiced and the House has paid to date $565,808 for conforming deliverables. The vendor delivered the Final Functional and Technical Requirements Analysis deliverables on time, which have since been verified and approved with all requested corrections made to Clerk and HIR/CAO satisfaction. A final HIR review of requested corrections to the Code Evaluation is pending and it is anticipated that acceptance and payment of the remaining balance will be satisfied prior to the end
The House will have ninety days after the acceptance of the final deliverables outlined above to exercise our option to have the current vendor perform tasks 2 and 3. These two tasks combined were originally budgeted for $870,000. We are receiving from the vendor a modified proposal for the completion of these tasks, reflecting the benefit of the vendor's acquired knowledge by analysis of the system, and with the intent of shortening the previously projected 9-12 month contract performance time. We anticipate presenting a modification to the Committee for approval by the end of July to initiate tasks 2 and 3. Upon commencement of the remaining tasks of Stage 2, the Clerk will seek approval to contract for Stage 3, Independent Validation and Verification-projected at upwards of $200,000.
Given our satisfaction with the current vendor and the on-schedule progress of the phases of this project, we continue to target bringing to the Committee a final implementation proposal (Stage 4) by early to mid-2002.
Question. Please delineate the policies you have established, if any, concerning the parking of employee vehicles in the various House garages after 3 pm on weekdays. Response. Employees entering House garages after 3:00 pm on weekdays are required to display a valid House ID and either a valid parking permit for the particular garage or an evening parking permit.
Valid parking permits are specific to garages and levels and include both permanent hangtag permits displayed on the rearview mirror and temporary parking permits displayed on the windshield or dashboard.
Evening parking permits, used primarily by evening and night employees of the U.S. Capitol Police and the Architect of the Capitol, are honored in various garages and on various levels, depending on time of arrival. At 3:00 pm, permits are honored on the lowest levels of garages, depending on space available. At 11:00 pm, permits are honored on all levels. The garages designated for evening and night parking are the Rayburn Garage, the East Underground Garage and the West Underground Garage. Employees parking with evening permits should vacate garages by 7:30 a.m. Unreserved parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis on the designated level of the designated garage. Employees arriving at any time of day or night should honor the posted "Reserved" and accessible/handicapped parking signs. Additionally, employees may not store their vehicles in an unreserved parking space for more than 45 days.
During the period of the Cannon Garage renovation project, employees arriving at any time of day or night who cannot find parking on their designated garage level are asked to park on a lower level. Employees who cannot find parking in their designated garage may park on Lot 5. If Lot 5 fills to capacity, employees may park on Lot 7.
Question. You have been participating in the fire-safety work in the House, and now in the work at the Library. Are you satisfied with the pace of progress? You recently conducted your own review and found additional deficiencies at the Library. What can this subcommittee do to expedite progress, other than provide all the funds the Architect can reasonably use in the next fiscal year for fire-safety work? Response. We are satisfied with the AOC's progress implementing new and upgrading existing fire protection systems within the House and the LOC. However, along with this progress comes the necessity to maintain, inspect and test the existing systems throughout the year according to National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards, which require various fire protection systems be tested on a weekly, monthly, semiannual, or annual basis. This is a substantial undertaking considering the size and scope of the work required to maintain the fire protection systems within the buildings. The AOC has made progress towards improving the maintenance, inspection, and testing of the systems. The AOC has contracted the annual inspections and has reallocated from routine maintenance to correct identified deficiencies. To facilitate this process, the AOC should develop a comprehensive maintenance, inspection and testing plan that provides the assurances that the existing systems will function properly when called upon during an emergency.
The two areas where the subcommittee could assist in expediting the process are: 1. The timing of projects funds. While we agree that projects should be fully designed before construction funds are made available in practice, this may delay projects. If the design is completed shortly after a budget submission it may be almost two years before the funding is made available to begin construction. If the subcommittee could devise a method to partially fund the construction phase of a project the year after design funds are requested, it could accelerate the completion of the fire systems.
2. Provide additional FTEs if the comprehensive maintenance, testing and inspection plan indicates that additional FTEs is needed to meet the NFPA standards.
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 27, 2001.
OFFICE OF THE ARCHITECT OF THE CAPITOL
ALAN HANTMAN, ARCHITECT
ROBERT MILEY, SUPERINTENDENT, HOUSE OFFICE BUILDINGS
Mr. TAYLOR. We will now take up the fiscal year 2002 budget of the Office of the Architect of the Capitol. We have Mr. Alan Hantman, the Architect of the Capitol, and several members of his staff.
Would you introduce the members of your staff, who are accompanying you.
Mr. HANTMAN. On the far right, Bob Miley, the Superintendent of the House Office Buildings; Michael Turnbull, who is the Assistant Architect; Amita Poole is our new Administrative Assistant, Mr. Chairman-and she has succeeded Herb Franklin; this is the first time she is seated at the table-and Jack Boertlein, our acting Budget Officer.
Mr. TAYLOR. The budget request that the subcommittee will consider is $245.4 million and 1,403 FTE's. There are six appropriation accounts in the Architect's budget request. Capitol buildings, $112 million; Capitol grounds, $8 million; House office buildings, $51.2 million; Capitol power plant, $47.1 million; Library buildings and grounds, $21.4 million; and Botanic Garden, $6.1 million.
This does not include funds for the operations of Senate office buildings. The other body will consider those needs, and that is estimated at $53.6 million and 609 FTE's.
We have your prepared statement, and we will have it inserted in the record.
Is there anything you would like to say briefly before starting? Otherwise, I will go right into questions.
Mr. HANTMAN. Go right ahead, Mr. Chairman.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Hantman follows:]
Thank you for inviting me here today to discuss the priorities that drive the budget needs of the Architect of the Capitol organization. I have been Architect of the Capitol for four years. I am proud of what the AOC has accomplished in that period, and look forward to significant additional accomplishments in the years ahead.
As you know, there is a historic amount of work currently on our plate and much more needs to be accomplished over the coming years. Many needs have been deferred and our structures continue to age. This, combined with new expectations of how our structures must accommodate modern safety, security and technological needs, along with the increasing demand for space, all serve to drive the funding needs for physical improvements.
As important as these physical improvements are, the most important needs addressed by our budget are investments in our human infrastructure. It is important that we support and strengthen our present workforce and bring people with new skills and abilities into our workplaces, to staff key positions to meet the physical challenges that confront the Capitol complex. We also need to provide our existing workforce with the tools and training they require to continue to not only provide, but to continuously improve, our support of the U.S. Congress and the American people. We have been working to do this in a difficult recruitment atmosphere, where strong competition has existed for qualified people in what has been a near full-employment economy.
Last year I made fire safety the top priority for AQC, and we have made significant progress on this multi-year effort (see Appendix A). While we are continuing our strong progress on fire safety initiatives, this year we are stressing Life Safety issues for our staff. People come first. We are a service organization, and without a dedicated and safe staff little could be accomplished. We are therefore focusing on reducing our accident and illness lost work-time rates, training our staff and continuing to build the human infrastructure to support the Congress well into the future (see Appendix B). We are continuing to hire necessary staff in the area of Life Safety as well as Fire Safety, to better support these critical initiatives, and we are requesting funding to build and maintain these programs going forward.