Summary: H.R.1938 — 97th Congress (1981-1982)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.1938. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (02/18/1981)

Public Buildings Act Amendments of 1981 - Amends the Public Buildings Act of 1959 to authorize the Administrator of General Services (GSA) to carry out preliminary engineering and design work for the alteration of a public building before a project for such alteration is authorized.

Requires approval by the appropriate Congressional committees before the Administrator may: (1) alter public buildings or acquire land for which costs exceed $1,000,000; (2) acquire a public building by exchange of property worth more than $1,000,000; (3) lease space in a building at a rate in excess of $1,000,000 (all formerly $500,000); (4) reduce the amount of space in an approved project by more than ten percent; (5) issue obligations, for purchase by the Secretary of the Treasury, to finance the acquisition or construction of a public building; and (6) alter leased premises if the cost of alteration exceeds $500,000.

Authorizes the Administrator to purchase options to buy land necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act.

Prohibits the Administrator from leasing any space to accommodate the following, except as may be necessary to meet requirements that cannot be met in public building: (1) major computer operations; (2) secure or sensitive activities related to the national defense or security; (3) offices which would require major alterations; or (4) a permanent court room, judicial chamber, or administrative office for any United States court. Directs the Administrator to submit the reasons for leasing such space to specified Congressional committees.

Requires the Administrator to publicly solicit competitive bids to procure space by lease for the Government. Directs the Administrator to provide a copy of the lease agreement to the highest ranking official of each Federal agency in leased buildings.

Directs the Administrator to consult with local elected officials and the head of the Federal agency involved before locating or relocating an office of such agency. Requires the Administrator to give preference to distressed areas when locating or relocating a Federal agency office within a metropolitan area. Specifies factors to be considered by the Administrator in making such decision. Directs the Administrator, under specified circumstances, to submit a relocation report to certain Congressional committees. Prohibits the Administration from carrying out such relocation for 30 days following the submission of such report.

Requires the Administrator to provide Congress annually with a program of projects and actions that are deemed necessary by the Administrator. Specifies lists to be included in such programs and in the Administrator's annual reports to Congress after January 31, 1982.

Prohibits the acquisition of land or an interest therein and preliminary engineering or design work for any project unless such acquisition or work: (1) is listed in the annual program submitted to Congress; and (2) is not disapproved by the appropriate Congressional committees by a specified date. Permits such committees to deauthorize such acquisitions or work within certain parameters.

Requires the Administrator to maintain specified information in order to keep Congress fully informed of the policies and activities of the GSA.

Makes the Administrator (formerly in conjunction with the Postmaster General) solely responsible for building project surveys.

Allows the Administrator to waive the application of the 15 percent rental payment limitation for Government leases and rentals.

Amends the Public Buildings Cooperative Use Act of 1976 to limit to ten percent the allocation of space within public buildings to commercial, cultural, educational, and recreational facilities and activities. Permits the Administrator to waive such limitation subject to certain conditions.

Amends the Public Buildings Act of 1949 to prohibit the Administrator from using the name of any individual, living or dead, in the name or other designation of any building under the custody and control of the GSA.

Amends the Public Buildings Act of 1959 to authorize the Administrator to make emergency repairs to any public building.

Directs the Administrator to construct, acquire, alter, lease, and assign and reassign space in public buildings. Establishes within GSA a Public Buildings Service to be headed by a Commissioner of Public Buildings. Creates the position of supervising architect to supervise all design activities of the Public Buildings Service.

Prohibits the Administrator from contracting for construction of any building other than one Government owned except under specified circumstances.

Sets forth requirements for the design and management of public buildings, including conformity with existing buildings, energy conservation, efficient interiors, and parking facilities for motor vehicles.

Directs the Administrator, assisted by the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, to acquire by loan or lease works of art by living American artists. Directs the Administrator, in conjunction with the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and on a reimbursable basis thereto, to utilize existing and develop new exhibitions that reflect the artistic, cultural, social, scientific, and industrial heritage of the United States. States that the Administrator shall circulate such works of art and exhibitions in Federal buildings throughout the United States. Limits the authorization for works of art for public building projects. Establishes an arts review panel that shall make recommendations to the Administrator.

Authorizes the Administrator to use one-half of one percent of the sums available for the construction, repair, and acquisition of public buildings for such purposes and one-twentieth of one percent of the sums available for the lease of buildings for such purposes.

Requires appropriations for the cost of completion of a public building or the total cost of a lease before construction may commence or a lease be entered.

Prohibits the Administrator and other officers and employees of the United States from constructing, purchasing, leasing, or acquiring any space for any departments or instrumentality of the United States in the greater Washington, D.C., metropolitan area unless consideration has been given to the possibility of locating them outside such area. Requires the headquarters officers of each department and major executive establishment to be located in the greater Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.

Amends the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to require rates and charges for public buildings and buildings leased on behalf of the United States to be established annually at a level approximating commercial rates, but not less than the costs of providing space and services.

Amends the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968 to direct the Administrator, the Secretaries of Housing and Urban Development and Defense, and the Postmaster General to inventory buildings within such officers' purview, within 60 days after the date of enactment and annually thereafter, in order to determine which of such buildings shall be subject to design, construction, and alteration in fiscal year 1983 and the estimated costs, whether or not the minimum guidelines and requirements established by the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board are met.

Declares that nothing in this Act shall affect the general authorities of the Central Intelligence Agency.