DEFENSE DIWISIOM B-156106 s- 11111111111111111 Ill11 11111111111111 LM095471 Dear Mr. Secretary: - The General Accounting Office (GAO)has made a'review of the management".gfcontracts for maintenance painting.of facilities by th%-&'my, Navy; &d Air Force; This letter smizes our major fLndings and reccxmnendationstogether tith commentsdated May 6, 1971, of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Installations and Logistics) in response to our draft report of Merch 4, 1971 (OSDCase 3248). The w,Ravy, and Air Force spend an estimated $100 mKU.ion a year on contracts for maintenance painting of facilities. Welooked into the administration of such contracts at 19 military installations in the United States and overseas. Wenoted numerous defects on recently painted surfaces and other indications of noncompliance with contract provisions pertaining to the quality of painting work performed by contractors at the military installations. Specifically, we observed evidence of inferior work- manship such as drips, sags, runs, poor coverage, and inadequate sur- face preparation. Webelieve that these deficiencies resulted from --inadequate pre-award surveys to assure that contracts are awarded to qualified contractors, --inadequate Government and contractor inspections during and upon acceptance of contract work, --inadequate paint testing practices, allowing the use of paint which did not meet Federal specifications, and --failure to prepare and distribute reports of contractors* unsatisfactory work. Most painting contracts did not contain a warranty clause. Further- more, when such a clause was included, there was little evidence of enforcement. . For detailed discussion of the above matters and of other fkhnd- ings of lesser significance, we refer you to our Waft report of 24arch4, 1971, and embits thereto containing numerous illustrations of the conditfons fouud by us at the military installations visited. Weremmend that you: 1. Take steps to assure that the mibit~y departments emphasize to the contracting officitis at the various military installations the need for improving their practices pertain&g to the award and administration of painting contracts, specifically in the areas of a. Pre-awaxd surveys, b. ~Goverment inspections, c. Contractors' quality control systems, d. Material (paint) testing, and e. Reporting of information on contractors' performance. 2. Consider having a study made of the desirability of including a wsmxmty clause in painting contracts. 3. Consider whether problem sreas similar to ones discussed above etist s&o in contracts for other types of facility mabatenanceand whether there is a need for strengthening procedures relative to madutenancecontracts in general. The Deputy Assistant Secretmy stated that, genwally, the deficien- cies were a result of a failure to follow existing policy and guidance as published by your Office and the headqmrters of the miUtary depart- ments. Ee belieed that the g&dance is in most cases suffdxient, but that in somerespects revisions may be needed. He stated that your Office will take steps to assure that the military depwixnents emphasize to field agencies and instaU.ations the necessity to comply with prescribed coutracting procedures related to maintenance contracts and to painting contracts in particulw. With regard to our recommendation that a study of the desirabil- ity of including a warranty clause in painting contracts be considered, the Deputy Assistant Secretary stated that the Department of Defense -2- . policy on wamanty clauses in construction contracts, as contained in Armed Services ProcurexuentRegulation (ASPS) l-324, is considered adequate and that the military departments are studying the need for strengthening the procedures at their level. ASPRl-324 s-bates that a warranty clause shall be used when it is found to be in the best interest of the Government and delineates a number of factors to be considered in making this determination. mder this ASERprovision the decision of whether or not to use a war- ranty clause is a matter of judgment to be applied in either individual procurements or classes of procurements. En practice, most painting contracts within the Department of Defense do not contain a warranty clause. We suggest that the desirability of more frequent use of such a clause in military painting contracts be considered in studying the need for strengthening procedures under ASPRl-324. The recommendations in this report are subject to the provisions of Section 236 of the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970. Wewill appreciate receiving copies of the statements you furnish the specified committees in accordance w5th these provisions. Copies of this report are being sent to these committees, Copies of this report are also being sent to the Director, Office of Managementand Budget, the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, and the Director, Defense Contract Audit Agency. Sincerely yours, . Director The Xonorable The Secre-hry of Defense
Review of the Management of Contracts for Maintenance Painting of Facilities by the Army, Navy, and Air Force
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1971-12-20.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)