Regrettably, The Star’s editorial shows that the editors either did not understand the General Accounting Office report, read the report, or both.
Yes, it is about the process, a very flawed one that allows errors of a factor of 10 to go unnoticed and be published, and does not account for civilian personnel moves, millions of dollars in office furnishings, IT equipment and parking structures for those relocated civil servants.
Yes, it is about savings, savings promised, but not realized. Implementation costs grew by 67 percent. Further, 41 percent of the recommendations are expected to result in negative 20-year net present value. In other words, these are not promised savings; rather, they are huge unplanned-for costs.
I agree with The Star that it is about the math: truly dismal.
Reference the Department of Defense response from the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Installations and Environment, that “… the Department continues to believe that the BRAC process is the only fair, objective, and proven process for closing and aligning bases in the United States.” The GAO report demonstrates amply that the current process is fatally flawed, with limited-to-no evidence to suggest that it is fair or objective and, consequently, unproven.
If the DOD is able to find the current BRAC process so worthy and successful, I am unable to imagine what a failed system and process would be to the department.
Gregory F. Potts