[Senate Hearing 106-967]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
S. Hrg. 106-967
FEDERAL PROTECTIVE SERVICE
REFORM ACT OF 2000
TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE
ENVIRONMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS
UNITED STATES SENATE
ONE HUNDRED SIXTH CONGRESS
SEPTEMBER 28, 2000
A BILL TO AMEND THE ACT OF JUNE 1, 1948, TO PROVIDE FOR THE REFORM OF
THE FEDERAL PROTECTIVE SERVICE
Printed for the use of the Committee on Environment and Public Works
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COMMITTEE ON ENVIRONMENT AND PUBLIC WORKS
one hundred sixth congress, second session
BOB SMITH, New Hampshire, Chairman
JOHN W. WARNER, Virginia MAX BAUCUS, Montana
JAMES M. INHOFE, Oklahoma DANIEL PATRICK MOYNIHAN, New York
CRAIG THOMAS, Wyoming FRANK R. LAUTENBERG, New Jersey
CHRISTOPHER S. BOND, Missouri HARRY REID, Nevada
GEORGE V. VOINOVICH, Ohio BOB GRAHAM, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho JOSEPH I. LIEBERMAN, Connecticut
ROBERT F. BENNETT, Utah BARBARA BOXER, California
KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON, Texas RON WYDEN, Oregon
LINCOLN CHAFEE, Rhode Island
Dave Conover, Staff Director
Tom Sliter, Minority Staff Director
Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure
GEORGE V. VOINOVICH, Ohio, Chairman
JOHN W. WARNER, Wyoming MAX BAUCUS, Montana
CHRISTOPHER S. BOND, Missouri DANIEL PATRICK MOYNIHAN, New York
JAMES M. INHOFE, Oklahoma HARRY REID, Nevada
CRAIG THOMAS, Wyoming BOB GRAHAM, Florida
LINCOLN CHAFEE, Rhode Island JOSEPH I. LIEBERMAN, Connecticut
C O N T E N T S
SEPTEMBER 28, 2000
Baucus, Hon. Max, U.S. Senator from the State of Montana......... 3
Lieberman, Hon. Joseph I. U.S. Senator from the State of
Moynihan, Hon. Daniel Patrick, U.S. Senator from the State of New
Voinovich, Hon. George V., U.S. Senator from the State of Ohio... 1
Bellew, Steven, Vice Chairman, Fraternal Order of Police, Federal
Protective Service Protective Committee, Dallas, TX............ 20
Letter, LESO program......................................... 38
Prepared statement........................................... 35
Gallay, Joel S., Deputy Inspector General, General Services
Prepared statement........................................... 30
Peck, Hon. Robert A., Commissioner, Public Buildings Service,
General Services Administration................................ 8
Letter, Celebrezze Federal Building.......................... 30
Prepared statement........................................... 28
Roth, Hon. Jane Roth, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals, Wilmington,
Prepared statement........................................... 34
Responses to additional questions from Senator Voinovich..... 35
Traficant, Hon. James A.. Ohio, U.S. Representative from the
State of Ohio.................................................. 5
Prepared statement........................................... 27
International Brotherhood of Police Officers, Kenneth L.
National Federation of Federal Employees, Anthony Maldonado.. 40
Text of H.R. 809, An Act to amend the Act of June 1, 1948, to
provide for reform of the Federal Protective Service........... 44
FEDERAL PROTECTIVE SERVICE REFORM ACT OF 2000
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2000,
Committee on Environment and Public Works,
Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:37 a.m. in
room 406, Senate Dirksen Building, Hon. George Voinovich
(chairman of the committee) presiding.
Present: Senators Voinovich, Baucus, and Moynihan.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. GEORGE V. VOINOVICH, U.S. SENATOR
FROM THE STATE OF OHIO
Senator Voinovich. Good morning. The hearing will come to
First of all, I would like to thank our witnesses for
appearing before the subcommittee today to testify on H.R. 809,
the Federal Protective Service Reform Act of 2000. I would
especially like to thank Congressman Traficant for taking the
time to come here this morning and discuss his legislation. In
Panel II, I would like to welcome Bob Peck, Commissioner of the
Public Buildings Service at the General Services
Administration, and Mr. Joel Gallay, Deputy Inspector General
of the GSA. And in Panel III, I would like to welcome the
Honorable Jane Roth of the U.S. Court of Appeals, located in
Wilmington, Delaware, and Mr. Steven Bellew, Vice Chairman of
the Fraternal Order of Police, Federal Protective Service Labor
The FPS has been a part of the Buildings Service of the GSA
since 1949. The Public Buildings Service provides work
environments for over one million Federal employees nationwide,
and serves as a builder, developer, lessor, and manager of
federally owned and leased properties, properties currently
totally more than 280 million square feet of office, storage,
and special space. The Public Buildings Service provides a full
range of real estate services, property management,
construction and repair, security services, property disposal,
and overall portfolio management.
The bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma
City, OK, in 1995 was a tragic wake-up call as to the need to
enhance security at Federal office buildings in the United
States. Shortly after the incident in Oklahoma City, the
President directed the Department of Justice to assess the
vulnerability of Federal office buildings particularly to acts
of terrorism and other forms of violence. A number of other
Federal entities participated in the process which resulted in
a number of recommendations to upgrade security at Federal
These recommendations were described in the Department of
Justice's final report issued on June 28, 1995, entitled:
Vulnerabilities Assessment of Federal Facilities. Included in
the report was a recommendation that consideration should be
given to elevating the FPS to a different level within the GSA.
The bill we are discussing this morning, H.R. 809, would
essentially codify that recommendation by creating a separate
service within GSA for the Federal Protective Service. The
separate FPS would have its own commissioner who would have
direct command and control and authority over the FPS regional
directors in each of the 11 geographic regions of the GSA.
Currently, the Assistant Commissioner of the Federal Protective
Service does not have line authority over the FPS Regional
Directors. Rather, the FPS Regional Directors report to the
Assistant Regional Administrators for the Public Buildings
Service. The Assistant Regional Administrators in turn report
to the Regional Administrators who are responsible to the GSA
I believe H.R. 809 addresses a serious problem with the
current organizational structure in GSA; mainly, the line of
command. Although the current Assistant Commissioner of FPS has
nearly three decades of law enforcement experience, he only can
issue guidance and has no authority over the FPS people in the
11 regions throughout the country. Also, the FPS regional
directors often do not have law enforcement experience and they
report to the FPS Assistant Regional Administrator or a PBS
Regional Administrator who in all likelihood does not have law
enforcement experience either.
The bill requires that the newly created Commissioner of
the Federal Protective Service and the FPS Regional Directors
meet minimum requirements for law enforcement experience. While
creating the Federal Protective Service as a free-standing
service within GSA, as would occur under H.R. 809, is one way
to address the line of command problem, I do not believe that
this is necessary or prudent.
First, I think it is important to clarify that FPS
currently performs two functions: security and law enforcement.
However, the security function of FPS cannot be easily
separated from the real estate function of the Public Buildings
Service. For example, the security function which includes such
activities as placement of security equipment and technology,
building design and operation, should be fully integrated with
the building management activities of the PBS.
Second, I believe the line of command can be best addressed
without breaking the link between PBS and FPS. I believe this
objective can be achieved by improving the organizational
structure of PBS to provide a clear linkage of authority
between the Assistant Commissioner of FPS with the Regional
Directors. However, I do agree that the Assistant Commissioner
and Regional Directors should meet certain minimum requirements
in terms of law enforcement experience.
I am pleased to see that FPS has undertaken several
initiatives to improve the effectiveness of FPS. For instance,
I understand that PBS has created a new Law Enforcement and
Security Officer position which is designed to be uniquely
suited to meet the security and law enforcement needs for
protecting Federal buildings.
I would like to hear whatever thoughts our witnesses may
have on this initiative. I also look forward to hearing from
our witnesses this morning on how we can provide a top-notch
security for our Federal buildings and whether H.R. 809
accomplishes the goal. In addition, I hope our witnesses will
be concise as to the provisions of this bill Congress could
conceivably enact in the short time remaining before we
adjourn. We are at the end right now. What part of this could
we get agreement on and get done.
Again, I thank you for coming today and I look forward to
your testimony and responses to any of the questions that may
I am pleased to have here with us today Senator Baucus and
Senator Moynihan. I will call on Senator Baucus first.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. MAX BAUCUS, U.S. SENATOR FROM THE
STATE OF MONTANA
Senator Baucus. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. First, I welcome
all the witnesses, appreciate your contributions here. Second,
I thank you, Mr. Chairman, for holding this hearing.
The Federal Protective Service clearly is of utmost
importance. After all, they are the ones that secure all our
Federal buildings. And after the Oklahoma incident, we are
paying even more attention to the FPS to make sure that it is
performing its duties as well as it possibly can.
As I understand it though, there are some who feel that
there is a bit of a disconnect between the Assistant
Commissioner of the Federal Protective Service in Washington
and the officers in each of the 11 regions. This bill attempts
to change that by establishing a chain of command, as I
understand it. I also believe that connecting the Assistant
Commissioner directly to his Regional Directors is positive.
And as you have said, Mr. Chairman, establishing a minimum set
of criteria of experience for FPS Directors also makes sense.
And there are other provisions of the bill which I think are
But I am not sold, frankly, on the need to make the Federal
Protective Service a separate entity in the Public Buildings
Service. Unless I am shown the contrary, my sense is that is
going to create more confusion and not less. Nevertheless, I am
not the expert on this. That is why we have witnesses; they
are. And I look forward to their testimony.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you, Senator.
Senator Baucus. Before I finish, Mr. Chairman, I would like
to just honor our wonderful Senator from New York who more than
other Senator in many, many decades has left his imprint on
public buildings in a very solid, wonderful way. I am fond of
saying, I think it is true, no public servant in the United
States of America has left a more positive legacy in
magnificent public buildings in our country's history since
Thomas Jefferson. And if you look at both ends of Pennsylvania
Avenue, up and down, if you look up in New England, other parts
of our country, it is clear. We are very honored, Senator, and
very thankful for all that you have done for our country.
Senator Moynihan. You are very generous, sir.
Mr. Chairman, I do not think I should add to that.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. DANIEL PATRICK MOYNIHAN, U.S. SENATOR
FROM THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Senator Moynihan. But if you look at the upper part of
Pennsylvania, you find guardhouses and barriers and policemen
and all the things that you do not associate with an open
society. We have to balance that. And we had an example the
other day which we should keep in mind. I think Bob Peck used
to be a member of our committee staff, Major Peck he is in the
Army Reserves. But a few days ago in London a mortar shell was
fired into the upper stories of the building that houses the--
it is probably where ``M'' used to work in the James Bond
Senator Moynihan. And they have recovered the apparatus. It
was Russian made, which suggests that it was probably an Irish
group. It weighs eight pounds, can be fired in 10 seconds, and
you disappear. So keep that in mind as we try to build walls
that mortars can come over. There is no such thing as absolute
security. But thank you for your generosity and your
Senator Voinovich. Thank you for being here, Senator
Moynihan. I remember even the White House, the days that you
were able to walk to the White House and walk around the White
House, the barricades are now up and it looks like we are under
siege. With the way that the environment is today, it does make
I think a sad commentary on our society.
Senator Moynihan. Could I make one point, sir. The first
fence around the White House was put up by Theodore Roosevelt
who was tired to seeing the civil servants from State, War and
Navy walk across his lawn to have lunch at the Ebbitt's Grill.
Senator Moynihan. And it was just high enough that you
really could not step over it. That was the only purpose. See
how far we have come.
Senator Baucus. I wonder, Senator, if there is some way to
reopen Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House, maybe
on a limited basis.
Senator Moynihan. The Washington Post had a fine editorial
this morning saying that.
Senator Baucus. Oh, really?
Senator Moynihan. Our former colleague, Bob Dole is coming
up with a Federal-City Council effort, and I have joined with
our Representative from Washington. And we have a plan, you
Senator Voinovich. Again, we want to thank you,
Representative Traficant, for coming here this morning, and we
look forward to your testimony.
STATEMENT OF HON. JAMES A. TRAFICANT, JR., A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF OHIO
Mr. Traficant. I appreciate it. I would like to start out
by saying this Senate hearing is out of control with some of
your small talk, but I have enjoyed it.
Senator Voinovich. You ought to come over more often.
Mr. Traficant. Yes, it is a little more loose over here.
I want to compliment you, Mr. Chairman, for the great job
that you have done and the continuing effort that you have
placed on our State and the Nation. And having worked in the
past in the field of public buildings, having a long
relationship with Senator Baucus, Senator Baucus is tough, to
say the least, but he was always vigilant as to what really was
best for America, and we respected that, and Mr. Mineta, Mr.
Oberstar, and I have supported you, Senator, as well as Senator
As far as Senator Moynihan, I can remember way back where
his ideas for America and the many people that followed those
ideas led to better cities, led to people having opportunities.
I just missed the tribute on the House floor to you, Senator,
and I wanted you to know that I think you have done a
tremendous job. I think that everything that has been said
about you has been good and you have always done it with
humility and with grace. Now, having said that, I want you to
change your position with this issue on Bob Peck.
Mr. Traficant. Let me get on to my statement. I have a
statement that I would ask unanimous consent to be included in
I was chairman of this subcommittee and I was astounded to
find out that in Oklahoma City there were three Federal
buildings being guarded by one contract guard. The Alfred P.
Murrah Building was a light blinking on and off for some
terrorist to make a statement. And after the review of that,
including the Justice Department's, task force reviews,
independent individual studies, they came to the same
conclusion that our subcommittee came to and ultimately the
House of Representatives--that real estate people really cannot
be responsible for law enforcement functions.
This bill would have been on a fast track and would have
been law had we made that deal and not left FPS responsible to
PBS, the real estate arm. And the argument has always been that
if you do that, you will take away the coordination. It has not
done that with the Capitol Police and the Architect of the
This bill will raise the number of FPS agents. As you know
and have read and you have stated in your opening statement, it
will increase and mandate training and standards of those
contract guards, many of whom are former policemen, Senator, we
are not saying they are not capable, but it would ensure
Our bill deals with looking at parity of other law
enforcement personnel with significant functions in a Federal
system and the whole pension network.
But the major issue continues to revolve around, Who is
responsible? And as a former sheriff, let me say that in all
the years I have been in Washington, I do not think we have had
anybody better, more straightforward than Mr. Peck. I think he
has done a tremendous job. I do not know what his status will
be in the future with the Presidential election, but there are
many people who realize his tremendous contribution. But Mr.
Peck is a real estate man.
The statement I am making to the Senate here today is that
the Nation is watching. These great monuments of America's
freedom, our buildings have become the prime targets. See, I
believe there is a way of having a structure of law enforcement
systematic designated approach with a coordinated effort, as
you have between the Capitol Police and the Architect of the
Capitol, to coordinate security concerns and needs. But once
real estate decisions become paramount in the financing
structure of limited Federal dollars, there is where you have
the dichotomy that could endanger public lives. That is our job
here is to protect lives. The courthouses are protected by the
Marshals Service. They have a fine relationship with the
courts. The Capitol Police have done a fine job, they have a
fine relationship with the Architect of the Capitol. And there
is no reason why in streamlining a law enforcement structure we
cannot have that same type of relationship.
Let me say, the law enforcement community in America
supports this bill. Every study that has been undertaken by the
Justice Department, including that recommendation for
separation with coordinated efforts, supports this. And all of
the other commission studies support that move.
The point I am making, I am not going to belabor the time
and I will be present here for questions, is basically this.
This bill would be law were it not for that provision. And the
reason why you are having this hearing is there are those in
America who believe it is that important that the future
security of Federal buildings rests on the management apparatus
of a law enforcement perspective more than a real estate
perspective. There is no reason in the world why we cannot
coordinate the two, as we have done in other law enforcement/
security issues in our Nation's Capitol.
So I thank you for having me here. I believe this bill
should be passed. And if the Senate in its wisdom finds that
there has to be some machinations and changes, we would be
willing to talk. But to let this sit, let there be one more
Alfred P. Murrah and they will lay it at our doorstep--What
have you done? I think we should make that change. Thank you.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you, Congressman Traficant.
Are there any questions for Congressman Traficant?
Mr. Traficant. None? Are you already on a fast track to
side with Peck? I urge you to take into consideration my
complete written text. Look at the supporting documentation
from the studies that have been done, and also at the parallel
examinations of other entities who have relationships while
Senator Voinovich. I think that we understand the purpose
of this legislation. It was just brought to my attention again
today where in Cleveland they were discussing the construction
of a child care center. A couple of years ago it was
recommended that the center be placed above a loading dock and
the word went out that this was not the place for it to be
located. Then a couple of years later, it is my understanding
that they are now contemplating putting it back where they said
it should not go because of security reasons. And the big issue
was that placing it in some other location would incur a cost
of some $1.8 million. And so you get the tension between the
security of the children and the building versus the cost of
putting it someplace else. It seems to me that when a decision
like that has to be made you need to look at the security issue
first, and if you cannot resolve that and you do not have the
money to do the other thing, then you do not do the other thing
and you do not have a child care center unless you are willing
to spend the money.
I think, as I have observed too often around here, we are a
little bit penny-wise and pound-foolish. We have some
tremendous unmet needs today. I think a child care center is an
unmet need. I think that we should have child care facilities
in our Federal facilities. I promoted that while I was Governor
of Ohio. That costs money. You want to make sure that they are
put in secure places but we do not seem to have money to do
that. But we do have money to go out and spend it on all kinds
of new programs that are coming along that are, frankly, more
popular in the polls than it is to deal with these unmet needs.
As a policy thing, colleagues, I think that it is about time we
did a study of the unmet needs of the Federal Government
because they are tremendous and we need to address those before
we go off getting into some new areas of responsibility.
But I understand the problem, Congressman.
Mr. Traficant. Can I respond briefly to the Cleveland
Senator Voinovich. Sure.
Mr. Traficant. Were it not for individuals involved with
you and your staff, Congressman LaTourette, a dollar issue
could have placed the child care center near the loading dock,
the most vulnerable section of the building. And certainly a
very powerful statement could have been made by some terrorist.
But dollar issues, in a crunch time of Washington budget
mashing, sometimes safety may not necessarily be the focus,
dollars become the focus. Cleveland is an excellent example.
And the law enforcement community made the recommendation to
not go forward with that child care center for those obvious
We cannot have the dichotomy and confusion of
decisionmaking on these types of issues. These are issues
certainly where qualified individuals, like Mr. Peck, can sit
down with the law enforcement personnel and plan and promulgate
strategies and actions that protect lives. This is our bottom
line here. We build great facilities. We must protect them now.
I think that is the major difference here.
I do not want this committee to believe under any
circumstances that we do not have a fine General Services
Administration or a fine Public Buildings Service. Nor do I
want you to think that we do not have one of the finest
directors of the Public Buildings Service. We are very
satisfied with him.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you, Congressman.
Senator Voinovich. Our second panel is Robert A. Peck,
Commissioner of Public Buildings Service and General Services
Administration, and Mr. Joel S. Gallay, Deputy Inspector
General, General Services Administration.
Mr. Peck, welcome.
STATEMENT OF ROBERT A. PECK, COMMISSIONER, PUBLIC BUILDINGS
SERVICE AND GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION; ACCOMPANIED BY
CLARENCE EDWARDS, ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER FOR THE FEDERAL
Mr. Peck. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and members of the
subcommittee. And I would like to thank Mr. Traficant for his
kind remarks about me and the GSA. I have a statement I would
like to submit for the record. I would just like to note that
with me today is Clarence Edwards, our Assistant Commissioner
for the Federal Protective Service, and I would like to submit
his resume for the record also, if I might. I will summarize my
We could not take security more seriously in the Public
Buildings Service. The Murrah Building was our building. I have
to tell you, I was not satisfied with the management of our
security function or the Federal Protective Service when I took
this job. I cannot claim to be a police expert. I grew up in a
military police family, however, and I have had some security
training in the Army. I care about this. It is not an easy task
running a building that is supposed to be open to the public
and yet secure. And so, I have summarized in my statement what
we have done.
On the issue of money, I will just mention that we have
tripled our spending on security since the Oklahoma City
incident to more than $250 million per year. We have almost
doubled the number of uniformed officers, and we have doubled
the number of contract guards. The fact is that the deployment
in Oklahoma City was a deployment recommended by the Federal
Protective Service at the time. And I would note that it is the
real estate managers of the Public Buildings Service and I who
came together several years ago to say we need to restructure,
reorganize, and intensify the training for security that we
have in our Federal Protective Service, because that is one of
the core functions that the tenants and the public tell us they
want us to perform.
So, No. 1, it is not the case that having at some point
real estate managers in the chain of command is a detriment to
security. Just as with the military, it is important that
civilians and those accountable to the public be able to
determine the mission, though not necessarily the organization
and tactics in the military or the law enforcement community.
And so what we have in GSA, I just want to be clear, the
organization we have today of the Federal Protective Service is
parallel to that of the Public Buildings Service. In each of
our regions, the security personnel--notice I keep saying
``security'' and not law enforcement--our security and law
enforcement personnel report to a regional director of the
Federal Protective Service. That regional director does report
to a regional Buildings person. It is the same chain of command
that we have on the real estate side. Perhaps that itself
But taking the Federal Protective Service out of the Public
Buildings Service would in fact go in absolutely the wrong
direction, because what we need to do is integrate the design
and management of our buildings with our imperative for
security. By the same token, our security personnel need to be
working hand-in-hand with architects, designers, engineers, and
Unfortunately, it is just a fact of human life, human
nature, and large organizations that if you put people in
separate structures they just have a hard time working
together. It is astounding to me, I would note to you, that the
Public Buildings Service is actually not established in
statute. The Administrator of General Services has the
authority to set up and abolish services within GSA. It is
amazing how hard it is for us to get cooperation between the
Public Buildings Service and the Federal Supply Service, two
agencies in the same organization but with headquarters in
different buildings, different commissioners, different lines
of reporting responsibility. And I just worry that if we
created a separate FPS we would have the same basic problem.
As I said, a lot of the impetus for change in FPS has come
out of the Public Buildings Service and our looking to see what
we could do for security. We thought several years ago when we
started what we call the new FPS that our officers and their
commanders had not been given a clear mission charge, which is
the first thing you have to do in a military or paramilitary
organization. We said the mission is principally security. And
we have intensified training for that. We are cross-training
everyone so that they are both law enforcement and security
personnel. That is what is important in this issue and I hope
you will not lose site of it. And I was encouraged to hear your
statement and that of Senator Baucus.
Because I want to hold to my time, may I just mention that
there are a number of provisions of this bill that with some
modifications we think could be helpful. At least one provision
as is we think is very important. It is really important that
we clarify the authority of our offices regarding arrest and
investigative powers in and around our buildings. I am happy to
see that the legislation would expand our jurisdiction, if we
get the consent of local police departments, to areas adjacent
to Federal property. That is essential to our officers and
agents carrying out their jobs, and I hope you will do it.
A number of other provisions I think, if amended, could be
quite helpful to us. I would note one thing. In expanding the
authority of our officers, the bill unfortunately creates the
anomaly that our criminal investigators, our special agents
would have lesser investigative and arrest powers than the
officers. We think with a simple fix, and we could recommend
some language to you, we could fix that mistake.
We think establishing a specific number of police officers
is a mistake. I do not know if 730 is too high or too low,
quite honestly. We are doing a staffing study and I believe
eventually we will have between law enforcement, security
officers, and FPOs many more than 730 officers. But I do not
know where that number comes from. In almost no instance of
public policy does it make sense to set a number.
Finally on pay and benefits, which I think is very
important. We have been trying very hard, including in
discussions with the Office of Personnel Management, to
increase the pay and benefits that our officers have. I think
that the way this bill is written would try to do that. It is a
1-year tying of our pay scale and benefits to the U.S. Capitol
Police. A lot of our positions do not seem commensurate with
those and we think we may actually be able to get our officers
better pay and benefits by not tying to that. But we would like
to have some help in legislation in getting the pay and
So, again, I would like to work with your staff, if you
move this bill, to try to improve some of those provisions. And
I am happy to answer any questions that you have.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you.
STATEMENT OF JOEL S. GALLAY, DEPUTY INSPECTOR GENERAL, GENERAL
SERVICES ADMINISTRATION; ACCOMPANIED BY EUGENE WASZILY,
ASSISTANT INSPECTOR GENERAL FOR AUDITING; JIM HENDERSON,
ASSISTANT INSPECTOR GENERAL FOR INVESTIGATIONS
Mr. Gallay. Good morning, Mr. Chairman. I am Joel Gallay,
Deputy Inspector General at GSA. I would like to introduce two
people with me today: Eugene Waszily, Assistant Inspector
General for Auditing; and Jim Henderson, Assistant Inspector
General for Investigations. I have my full statement which I
would like to submit for the record and would just summarize
that this morning.
I appreciate the opportunity to come before the
subcommittee to discuss the views of the Office of Inspector
General on H.R. 809. Our office has done a significant amount
of work in recent years relating to building security in
general, and Federal Protective Service operations in
particular. Much of this work was spurred by initiatives to
upgrade Federal building security after the bombing of the
Alfred Murrah Building in Oklahoma City.
The centerpiece of the bill under your consideration today
is the proposal to remove FPS from PBS and establish it as a
separate operating service of GSA. This new service would be
headed by a commissioner who would be appointed by and report
directly to the GSA Administrator.
We agree that improvements are needed in the existing FPS
structure. We strongly believe that there needs to be a direct
chain of command and line of authority between the FPS
headquarters in Washington and FPS field personnel. We also
support the explicit requirements in the bill for the FPS head
and the assistant commissioners and regional directors to have
direct law enforcement experience. We believe these provisions
are particularly critical insofar as FPS performs a law
Law enforcement agencies which operate within larger parent
organizations, like the Office of Inspector General, are
traditionally staffed by professional law enforcement personnel
with a direct chain of command from the headquarters level to
the field level. This structure assures more effective
oversight of the use of law enforcement authorities and
consistent application of polices and procedures, particularly
important with respect to matters such as jurisdiction and the
use of deadly force.
We think that most outsiders would be surprised to learn,
as you pointed out, Mr. Chairman, that while the Assistant
Commissioner here in Washington is the nominal ``head'' of the
FPS, he can only issue policy guidance. He does not have
command and control over the FPS Directors in the 11 GSA
regions. These Directors, most of whom currently do not have
prior law enforcement experience, report to Assistant Regional
Administrators for PBS in the regions and not to FPS
Two of our audits serve to illustrate some of the problems
inherent in this organizational structure. In our examination
several years ago of the criminal investigator program within
FPS, we found that criminal investigator activities in the
field were generally operating in inconsistent ways, with no
program accountability. We reported on problems like unbalanced
staffing. For example, one region had a ratio of 1 criminal
investigator for 42 buildings, while another had 1 criminal
investigator for 641 buildings. We also reported on
inconsistent investigative approaches and found that in some
regions these inconsistencies raised real concerns about
whether the safety of Federal employees was being compromised.
Similar problems were noted in another audit we issued in
March of this year where we examined FPS' management of the
contract guard program. FPS central office has been trying to
create a national program with standards for areas like guard
training, weapons, guard eligibility, and suitability to be
applied to all GSA guard contracts. Our review of this program
concluded that an absence of controls and oversight had led to
operational breakdowns at the regional levels. For example, we
found hundreds of guards were on post without valid suitability
determinations; armed guards were on post without any firearms
training or they were overdue for firearms qualifications; and
guard services in one region were being acquired through a
short-cut method without being subject to critical program
In addition to these formal audits, we have encountered a
number of situations over the last few years involving regional
FPS employees acting in violation of established national
policy. These situations included several instances of FPS
officers carrying firearms while off duty; a number of
instances of FPS officers carrying firearms without having been
properly qualified; and an FPS supervisor in one region
authorizing the issuance of shotguns, which FPS officers are
neither qualified with nor authorized to carry.
The clear message in these audits and other reviews is that
FPS would greatly benefit from an organizational overhaul to
improve its ability to implement consistent policies and
procedures. By requiring law enforcement experience at both the
central office level and at the supervisory level in the
regions and by providing that the FPS head would appoint the
regional directors in the field, H.R. 809 takes several steps
toward this organizational overhaul.
We do not believe, however, that FPS necessarily needs to
be removed from PBS in order to effectuate the changes in chain
of command for purposes of strengthening FPS' law enforcement
functions. In our view, these changes can be made within PBS.
This would achieve the much-needed improvements in command and
control over law enforcement functions while meeting the
coordination and other concerns PBS has with the proposal to
remove FPS entirely.
Under H.R. 809, the new FPS Commissioner would be
designated as the ``security official of the United States''
for the protection of GSA-controlled buildings. We believe that
this broad designation is generally unworkable and would add
confusion to what are in fact legitimate and important security
functions that are exercised by PBS. Security is a multi-
faceted area and involves aspects of building location, design,
planning, and operations. Building location, design, and
planning would clearly seem to be generally within the province
of PBS. On an individual building operations level, building
security and safety is the responsibility of FPS and the
Building Security Committee for that building, with PBS
The bill's proposed removal of FPS from PBS and its
designation of the FPS head as the ``security official for the
United States'' leave unanswered several critical questions,
especially: What security functions would remain in PBS and
what functions would be transferred to FPS? Clearly, building
design should remain the responsibility of PBS, while police
activities and supervising guard forces should be the
responsibility of FPS. In between, however, lies a gray area
where the decisions on division of responsibility and transfer
of functions are not very easy.
We believe that, even under the current organization,
better coordination of the building security function is
needed. We have concerns that making FPS a stand alone service
in GSA may not be an immediate cure for, and may even
exacerbate, some of the problems we have seen in recent years.
For example, we issued a series of alert reports highlighting
serious problems in the agency's building security enhancement
program undertaken in the aftermath of Oklahoma City.
Ultimately, the problems there stemmed from a failure of
coordination within the FPS organization and between FPS and
PBS. Whatever organization may result from this legislation or
from GSA's own efforts, a strong linkage between FPS and PBS
needs to be developed and maintained in the area of building
I would like to turn just briefly to the bill's provisions
on law enforcement authority. H.R. 809 would give FPS special
police, renamed ``police officers,'' general law enforcement
authority, including the authority to carry firearms, seek and
execute arrest and search warrants, and make warrantless
arrests under specified circumstances. We support this
provision. We believe it is a much-needed clarification of the
uniformed officers' authorities.
The bill also would make minor changes to the law
enforcement authorities exercised by the nonuniformed officers
of FPS. But, as Commissioner Peck pointed out, the way the bill
is drafted there is an anomaly that would be produced. We know
of no reason that would call for a differential between the
authorities given to the uniformed officers and nonuniformed
officers. We, too, would advocate changing the bill to give the
new special agents the same law enforcement authorities as the
new police officers.
Mr. Chairman, that concludes my summary of the testimony. I
would be pleased to answer any questions.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you.
I would like to start off with the Cleveland situation.
Apparently there was some disconnect there in terms of
decisionmaking. If the regional people were responsible to the
Federal Protective Service and Commissioner, a decision would
have been made that is not where that child care facility
should be built. Obviously, somebody else came along and said,
no, I think we can build it there, it is not such a big
problem, and we are going to put it there because maybe it is
going to save us $1.8 million and we need to have the facility.
Wouldn't this legislation help clarify that kind of a situation
in that the thing would have probably been bounced up to
somebody in Washington and they would have discussed it and
decided that this is what the decision is and that is the end
Mr. Peck. Mr. Chairman, I only became aware of this
situation yesterday, so I do not have enough facts to know what
has actually gone on there. But having dealt with the issue of
where we locate and how we protect child care centers all over
the country, because we operate 113 of them, I can just tell
you that having separate services would make the situation
worse, because ultimately the factors that go into a decision
about where you put a child care center include: what space do
you have available in a building that you do not have a tenant
in or you can move a tenant out of; what indeed is the most
secure or the most threatened space in the building; how much
will it cost to fix it up; if structure or other appurtenances
in the building have to be changed, those are going to be done
by PBS. This just makes the point again that the security
people and the real estate people need to be joined at the hip,
not torn asunder, to make these decisions in an intelligent
I am going to find out what has happened in Cleveland. But
I can tell you, having worked through these before, I have not
seen a situation that I have delved into where I have seen us
make a decision based on the cost at the expense of security.
It just has not happened in my experience. But I will find out.
Senator Voinovich. I would be very interested because if
what was reported in the paper is true, there is a disconnect
there. Two years ago a memo said, no, do not do it. Somebody
came along and said, well--and there was a quote from an
individual there--said, well, no matter where you could put
these things, you have got a problem, so we are going to go
ahead and do it anyhow. So the issue is the decision was made
apparently by the person that was in the PBS and not in the
Mr. Peck. But the FPS people are in PBS. I do not know
there is that disconnect. Without knowing the situation, it is
easy to say, boy, they should not be over or near a loading
dock. On the other hand, if the alternate locations are worse--
I mean, we have had child care centers right out in the front
of a building next to the sidewalk. We do not want to have the
child care centers there either. So, again, without knowing, it
is hard to know what the decisionmaking is about. I have
discovered that with some security issues that get brought to
my attention there is so much emotion involved that rationality
has sort of gone out the window.
May I mention two other things?
Senator Voinovich. Yes. But I would like to just ask, and
it is probably a touchy question, but is there some
interpersonal difference between the persons who run the FPS
and the PBS in Washington and is this maybe the reason why we
have this legislation? Is there some adversarial relationship
or interpersonal problem there that has exacerbated a situation
that has brought this to the surface now?
Mr. Peck. Well, you can ask Mr. Edwards. There is not
between him and me. I think if there has--I will be honest
about it--I think if there has been a problem between PBS and
FPS, it has been that in the past FPS was regarded within PBS
as sort of a separate entity and not enough brought into the
decisionmaking on where we locate buildings, how we design
them, and how we operate them. By the same token, and
unfortunately, when I came to GSA I asked officers in FPS what
they felt their responsibility was with respect to supervising
the contract guards, for example, of whom we have thousands,
and I had many officers tell me I don't have anything to do
with them. Which is a huge mistake because our security forces
need to believe that everything that happens on security is
something that matters to them. We cannot afford to have some
officers thinking that the contract guard is some other group,
that that is not a part of my job, or that the technological
equipment is somebody else's job. They all need to be very
integrated. So this is one of those issues where people keep
asking me why are you on such a tear about this, and it is
because I believe so firmly that the course we are on is the
Clarence Edwards and I agree on what the principal mission
is and how we ought to approach it. In some regions, there may
be some disconnects between some of the assistant regional
administrators and the regional directors. I will tell you
this--and I want to refute this lack of qualifications notion--
we have a really good set of regional directors. To my
knowledge, I am trying to go down the list, I would like to
submit for the record a list of our regional FPS directors and
their qualifications because I know just in my mind at least
seven or eight of the 11 have law enforcement qualifications.
The regional director in this region came out of the
Metropolitan Police Department at one point and the Park
Police, if I remember correctly. So I do not know where this
thinking comes from.
I do not think there is that disconnect. Some of our
Assistant Regional Administrators for Public Buildings have
been among the most forceful advocates for higher pay,
increased benefits, and better training for the FPS. I do not
want to say that there is never any personality conflicts, that
is always true in some large organization.
Senator Voinovich. Congressman Traficant made a major point
of what is the difference between GSA and the relationship
between the Capitol Architect and the Federal protection here
in Congress. Would either one of you like to comment on that?
Mr. Peck. Having worked up here, I would rather. The
organizational structure of the Congress as a whole, with two
houses that are co-equal, is so different from most other
organizations in the world it is hard to make the analogy. I
will say we feel that we are more like the Park Service and the
Park Police. The Park Service has control and jurisdiction of a
huge amount of Federal property, there is a U.S. Park Police, a
separate organization within the Park Service, that has law
enforcement and security jurisdiction on the Park Service
properties. I note that they are not a separate agency within
Interior, separate from the Park Service, but a part of the
Park Service, because the Park Rangers and the Park Police need
to work hand-in-glove.
That is an organization that I think works really well. I
will just tell you, because Clarence Edwards come out of a long
and successful career in the Park Police, that is basically the
model we have been thinking about as we go ahead on this. And
it is true that there is a complicating factor in GSA.
It is true that Clarence cannot issue a direct order down
the line in the regions, just like I cannot issue a direct
order down the line in the regions to tell somebody to fix up
that building. And I realize that in a police culture, in a
security culture, that may be more of a problem than it is in
what is more of a commercial real estate structure. And I
think, to be honest, if you ask Clarence, he would honestly say
that is a source of frustration to him. And I think that
particular aspect of our organization is a source of
frustration to him, but not the fact that he is not a separate
Mr. Gallay. If I may just add.
Senator Voinovich. Mr. Gallay.
Mr. Gallay. I think that really does put the focus on the
key issue here. And the example of the Park Police is a good
one. Within the Park Police there is direct chain of command, a
direct line of authority and command and control with respect
to the law enforcement function. The organization does work
well as part of a larger parent organization, the National Park
Service. That is why we think some change is necessary and
would be helpful to alter, with respect to the law enforcement
functions, the kind of balkanized approach that has existed
with respect to the Federal Protective Service in performing
law enforcement functions.
But the issues, the concerns that Commissioner Peck has
raised with respect to the need to coordinate the law
enforcement issues with the security functions are real, and
that kind of coordination is essential. We think the changes
that are necessary could be made within the PBS structure,
permitting that linkage to occur.
Senator Voinovich. Does that require statutory changes?
Mr. Gallay. No.
Senator Voinovich. It would not?
Mr. Gallay. No, sir.
Mr. Peck. We could, again because PBS was established by
administrative order inside GSA, we could change the reporting
relationship inside. I have considered that and I have not done
it in the past, quite honestly, because I have thought that the
logic of my position, which is that we all need to be joined at
the hip, has meant to me that the reporting structure of FPS
should be parallel to the reporting of PBS. It is an argument I
have made. I have not discussed this before with the IG. I have
to say I very much respect their work in this area and I am
certainly willing to reconsider that.
Senator Voinovich. Mr. Gallay, do you think the FPS is
mostly security or law enforcement?
Mr. Gallay. Well, that is a great question. The FPS
traditionally has performed mostly a law enforcement function.
And one of the things that this bill brings into focus, and one
of the things that has been going on with an effort within PBS
has been to try and get a handle on what is this beast: Should
it be doing just law enforcement, or is it really pursuing more
of a security orientation. There clearly needs to be a marriage
But with respect to the law enforcement functions, it needs
to operate as a law enforcement organization. I think when we
talked about the Capitol Police, the structure, as I understand
it, is that there is again a police organization but that then
reports to a board which includes the Architect of the Capitol
and the Sergeants at Arms of the Senate and House. They deal in
a kind of over-seeing sense with issues of security that
include both aspects. That is the model we think would work
Senator Voinovich. Be coordinated.
Mr. Gallay. Yes. I think the frustrations Commissioner Peck
said Mr. Edwards experiences he probably experiences as well in
terms of dealing with the regions on some issues. And that is
part of the concerns we have seen when we dealt with the
building security enhancement program. The Commissioner issued
a very clear direction to everybody concerned that the data to
be entered into the data base intended to record what
improvements have been made, that an improvement was only to be
recorded as having been made once it was operational. Well, our
audit found that there were wholesale problems in that, and the
information one was presented with as to what the status of
those changes were was wrong in many cases. I am sure he would
often like to be able to have a more direct authority.
In law enforcement organizations, that is really important,
for the reasons that we have addressed.
Senator Voinovich. The other thing from your testimony that
is a little disturbing to me is the discrepancy in terms of the
privately hired people and the qualifications of those
individuals. It is all over the lot. How do you guarantee that
those standards are met? That is very disturbing.
Mr. Gallay. The standards are there and the objectives that
the Commissioner has established for the FPS are excellent. But
you do not get there unless you provide the resources for
contract oversight and ensure that national standards are
enforced. And if you have individual regions which are going in
different directions, that can cause problems.
Senator Voinovich. I would be really interested to see what
you observed around the country, and it would be interesting to
get your input on, if you did that, why is it in certain areas
these people are right up to snuff and they are doing what they
are supposed to be doing, then you go into another area and
they are not at all. Is it a product of the fact that the
person managing the building was not conscientious enough in
terms of negotiating the contract as to qualifications of the
Mr. Gallay. If I may just for a moment. PBS had a real
challenge following Oklahoma City. They had a lot on their
plate. The contract guard program went from something under
3,000 at that time to over 6,000 presently. That is a huge
change in a program to have to manage.
The breakdowns that we have seen are largely attributable
to a need for making sure that when you have gone to a
contracted out program you need to continue to ensure--it is
trust but verify--you need to ensure that what you have paid
for is what you are getting. That is the area where there have
been problems; there is inadequate attention to the controls in
the program and to overseeing the contracts that have been put
in place. There are good standards but the standards have not
been uniformly enforced.
Senator Voinovich. Do you think that if the Administrator
in Washington had the power over these people directly that
those standards would be more adhered to than they have been in
Mr. Gallay. That is a safe bet, but there are no
Mr. Peck. Mr. Chairman, two things. One is I do not want to
waffle on the question you asked about security versus law
enforcement. Job No. 1 is security, physical security of the
people who work in and who visit our buildings. And that is
what we have said. That is a fundamental change in the FPS
mission from what it was before. It is not to say that there
are not important law enforcement functions, and our folks, I
want to tell you, are as good as you get at things like crowd
control. We had terrific experience in Seattle where overall
one could fault the law enforcement response. Our people were
stellar and I think were recognized for that. So we are really
good at that. But it is security.
Senator Voinovich. When you are referring to your people--
Mr. Peck. I mean the Federal Protective Service people who
we brought in from other areas but who were mostly people
headquartered in our Region 10 in Seattle. They had sealed off
our area we thought in an appropriate way and were very well
prepared for what happened in Seattle, to the point that when
things got out of hand the mayor and others were using our
buildings as the place where they had their press conferences
because those were safe havens. I am just saying it was a great
Senator Voinovich. OK. In terms of security, you are
talking about the people that came in and looked at it, but you
are not referencing the contract personnel that were there
Mr. Peck. No, sir. That was our uniformed officers as well
as our regional director who organized the response there. I am
talking about our uniformed officers, who we do move around the
country and need to have the authority to do that. They are
very well trained. We think they have needed more training on
some security issues. Individual building security issues, we
have had a long history with crowd control and demonstrations
because our buildings are often the focal point for those. Our
people are very good at that.
Senator Voinovich. So it is your security/uniformed people
that you are talking about. For example, how many of those
people do you have in the Cleveland region?
Mr. Peck. I forget what the number is in Cleveland. If I
remember correctly, it is somewhere between four and five
actual uniformed Federal Protective Service officers in
Cleveland. I will get you the number.
Like every other part of PBS, most of the job of human
security in the buildings--and remember, security starts with
intelligence, finding out where the threats are and stopping
them before they get even close to you. That is the most
important thing. Second is hardening your targets, which you
can do by technological means as well as human means. And
third, actually using our tenants as eyes and ears and having
everybody be alert. I am saying that that basic security of the
facilities we think is job No. 1. We are fortunate in that we
do not have that many major crimes in our building. We do have
the need occasionally to go in when lines of people waiting for
Social Security or INS get out of control. But our basic
challenge is security. And we are getting better at that all
Second, on the contract guard issue, this is where we get a
confusion. We now have 6,000 contract guards. As I said, I was
concerned when I came in that some parts of FPS did not think
they were responsible for even overseeing the contract guards
or making sure they were doing their job. We found instances,
as has the IG, in which we did not make sure that the contract
guard sitting at a desk knew clearly and concisely what it was
they were supposed to do, and, by the way, what they are not
supposed to do.
We identified 3 years ago when we came out with a plan for
a strengthened FPS that improving the contract guard program
was very important. This April we came out with a new contract,
standard contract for contract guards which increases training
requirements for the contract guards. It will cost us more
money and we have budgeted for that in fiscal year 2001 and
fiscal year 2002.
We are also, and this is the final thing, and this is
really important and important for everyone to know, we are now
on things like firearms training, Federal Protective Service
personnel, Federal employees will supervise the firearms
certification. So when it is tested we will not have
contractors, we are going to rely a whole lot less on
contractors self-certifying that they have done the training we
require and much more on having our own people check it. We are
increasing the number of hours the contract guards will have to
be trained, and the final exams will be proctored by Federal
Protective Service personnel.
So all of those things are big improvements in the contract
guard program. We have also changed our contract so that if we
do not think we are getting good service out of the
contractors, we can terminate them fast. And that is a club you
unfortunately need to have over contractors' heads.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you very much for your testimony.
Mr. Peck. Thank you.
Mr. Gallay. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Voinovich. I would suggest that the two of you get
together and talk about some of the concerns, and I would be
interested in what your reaction to that is.
Mr. Peck. Thank you.
Senator Voinovich. Our next panel is Honorable Jane Roth,
the U.S. Court of Appeals, Wilmington, Delaware; and Steven
Bellew, Vice Chairman of the Fraternal Order of Police, Federal
Protective Service Labor Committee, Dallas, Texas. We welcome
you this morning.
We will begin the testimony with Judge Roth. Judge, we are
glad to have you here again.
Judge Roth. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
STATEMENT OF HON. JANE ROTH, U.S. COURT OF APPEALS, WILMINGTON,
Judge Roth. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate having the
opportunity to appear before you today to discuss H.R. 809, the
Federal Protective Service Reform Act of 2000.
In March of 2000 the Judicial Conference of the United
States resolved that H.R. 809 be amended to make clear that,
should this bill be enacted into law, it would not diminish or
interfere with the statutory authority of the United States
Marshals Service to provide security for the Federal judiciary.
The Marshals Service authority to provide security for the
judges, judicial employees, witnesses, and jurors derives from
28 United States Code Section 566. The Judicial Conference
recommends the following amendment be added to H.R. 809 as a
new Section 11. It would state:
``None of the provisions of this Act shall be construed to
interfere with, supersede, or otherwise affect the authority of
the United States Marshals Service to provide security for the
Federal judiciary pursuant to 28 United States Code, Section
Prior to 1982, the General Services Administration and the
Marshals Service shared responsibility for security inside
Federal courthouses. Under this shared responsibility, security
was inadequate. In 1982 Chief Justice Warren Burger and
Attorney General William French Smith, in cooperation with the
GSA, agreed that the Marshals Service should assume primary
responsibility and authority to provide security and protective
services in Federal buildings housing court operations.
In order to assist with implementation of this agreement,
the Marshals Service received delegated authority from the GSA
Administrator to contract for guards in court-occupied space.
In 1983, as part of a joint judicial and executive branch
initiative, the Marshals Service established the Judicial
Facility Security Program. As a result of this agreement and
its subsequent implementation, the Marshals Service assumed
responsibility for all security inside courthouses and GSA
retained responsibility for security outside courthouses.
The judiciary believes the Judicial Facility Security
Program has proven to be efficient and effective and that it
should be continued.
We are concerned that Section 6 of H.R. 809 could be read
to infringe upon the role of the Marshals Service to provide
security in court-occupied space because it gives authority to
the newly created position of Federal Protective Service
Commissioner to serve as the Government's law enforcement
officer in buildings under the control of the GSA
Administrator. In addition, Section 9 of the bill could be read
to change the responsibility for contract guard employment
standards. Currently, the Marshals Service uses standards of
suitability which it has developed for employment of contract
guards. The judiciary wants to ensure that enactment of this
proposed legislation would not lead to a change in this
We believe the amendment proposed by the Judicial
Conference would only clarify the intent of H.R. 809. The
report of the House Committee on Transportation and
Infrastructure which accompanied the bill to the House floor
states: ``This legislation enhances the FPS, and has no impact
on the facilities secured by the Secret Service, Federal Bureau
of Investigation, and United States Marshals Service.''
However, the report language is not binding. The judiciary
believes that language in the proposed bill itself is
We also believe that the Marshals Service and GSA do not
support any interference with the authority of the Marshals
Service as found in 28 United States Code Section 566, and
affirmatively support continuance of the Judiciary Facility
I also spoke to Representative Traficant this morning. He
does not oppose the language that we are proposing. He wants
the bill to move forward quickly, but he does not feel that the
language that we propose in any way impinges upon the
legislation that he is supporting.
I would be happy to answer any questions you may have and,
once again, thank you for the opportunity to appear before the
Senator Voinovich. Thank you very much.
STATEMENT OF STEVEN BELLEW, VICE CHAIRMAN, FRATERNAL ORDER OF
POLICE, FEDERAL PROTECTIVE SERVICE LABOR COMMITTEE, DALLAS,
Mr. Bellew. Good morning, Mr. Chairman, and thank you for
giving me the opportunity to appear before you today. My name
is Steven Bellew, and I am a Federal Protective Service Police
Officer from Dallas, Texas, and Vice Chairman of the Fraternal
Order of Police-FPS Labor Committee. I am here today at the
request of Gilbert Gallegos, National President of the Grand
Lodge Fraternal Order of Police, the nation's largest
organization of law enforcement professionals, to testify about
the importance of enacting into law H.R. 809, the Federal
Protective Service Reform Act.
In the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing and the deaths of
168 innocent people in 1995, many in the Congress and the
Federal Protective Service sought ways to ensure that such a
senseless loss of life would never happen again. In the 5-years
since the bombing of the Murrah Building, much has been done to
enhance Federal building security and public safety. However,
the General Services Administration and the Public Buildings
Service have proven themselves unwilling or unable to implement
those reforms which are most necessary to address several
current problems within the Federal Protective Service.
First, and foremost, is the internal dismantling and
weakening of the FPS. Over the last several years, the Public
Buildings Service has moved FPS away from its traditional focus
on patrol and response activities, placing a greater reliance
on State and local law enforcement to act as first responders
to critical incidents in major U.S. cities.
A related problem is the lack of law enforcement experience
in front-line management. The Regional Administrators of the
Public Buildings Service and at least five of the Regional FPS
Directors do not have law enforcement backgrounds. The
Assistant Commissioner of FPS exercises no direct control and
has been relegated largely to an advisory and policymaking
role, despite having over 20 years of command level law
enforcement experience. Thus, the effectiveness of the FPS as a
law enforcement agency is severely crippled by the fact that
the Commissioner does not have direct command and control
authority over his officers across the Nation. This view was
also expressed in the 1995 ``Vulnerability Assessment of
Finally, the heavy reliance of GSA on the use of contract
security guards to provide the bulk of protective services in
America's Federal buildings presents serious security concerns.
As a whole, private security guards do not receive the same
level or quality of training as do FPS police officers. While
the use of contract guards by GSA has been steadily increasing
over the years, along with the increase in the PBS inventory,
the number of full-time police officers has declined.
How does this legislation address the problems which have
been outlined above? The primary goal of H.R. 809 is simple: To
reestablish the Federal Protective Service as an elite Federal
law enforcement agency with a well-trained, professionally led,
and highly motivated cadre of officers. H.R. 809 will enhance
the safety of America's Federal buildings in a number of
First, the legislation provides for the separation of the
FPS from the Public Buildings Service and elevates the agency
within GSA. By placing the FPS outside of the Public Buildings
Service, the legislation will ensure that law enforcement is
given the same level of consideration as property management,
and not as a secondary concern of PBS.
The Fraternal Order of Police continues to believe that
separation and elevation of the FPS is the only sure way of
improving the effectiveness and capabilities of the agency. Not
only would this move establish direct command and control
authority over FPS officers with the Assistant Commissioner, it
would also ensure that individuals throughout the chain of
command have the experience and knowledge necessary to
effectively command a law enforcement force.
As I have already mentioned, over the years we have
witnessed the quiet dismantling of the FPS, most noticeably in
the staff reductions which continue to occur throughout the
agency. H.R. 809 will reverse this trend by requiring GSA to
maintain a minimum of 730 full-time Federal Protective
Officers. Unfortunately, this provision is greatly needed due
to GSA's disregard of the provisions of Public Law 100-440. In
looking into the issue of GSA's noncompliance, the Office of
Inspector General concluded in 1995 that:``. . . whenever
funding and FTE positions became available, these additional
resources were directed into an alternative protection program,
even after Public Law 100-440 was enacted.'' And ``Not only
were the FPO ranks not increased, but GSA also permitted the
number of officers to decline significantly.''
H.R. 809 has several other provisions vital to the future
of the Service. It will clarify and enhance the authority of
FPS officers, and it will require that the Commissioner of FPS
establish minimum standards and training requirements for
contract security guards.
In the end, Mr. Chairman, this is not a ``pay raise'' bill
and I do not know of any direct benefits which will accrue to
FPS officers by its passage. Those of us who do put our lives
on the line every day to ensure the safety and protection of
Federal employees and facilities believe that H.R. 809 is an
important step toward improving the capabilities of the Federal
Protective Service to meet the security challenges of the 21st
Century. Passage of this legislation is a top priority of the
Fraternal Order of Police, and we hope to work with members of
this subcommittee to ensure its enactment before the end of the
Thank you again, Mr. Chairman, for allowing me the
opportunity to address you this morning. I will be happy to
answer any questions you may have.
Senator Voinovich. Thank you very much.
Judge the Federal Marshals Service, how does that work out
with the Federal Protection Service? You have your marshals and
you have got to change so that the marshals have authority then
for you say the internal security and the FPS has the external.
Does that work out pretty good?
Judge Roth. That works out very well, and we would like to
have it continue that way. As I mentioned, there was concern in
1982 that there was insufficient security in courthouses. With
the arrangements we have worked out now, we feel it works very
well. We are concerned at the present time that there is a
disconnect with GSA doing security outside courthouses and the
marshals doing security inside courthouses. We would like to
coordinate and consolidate that security more. But we feel it
is very important that the Marshals Service continue to play
their present role inside courthouses. Since statutorily that
role is given to GSA and the Marshals Service does it under
agreements, we feel that, unless the statutory language is
added to the bill to clarify that the FPS jurisdiction will in
no way impinge upon or affect the Marshals Service, there could
Senator Voinovich. The Federal Marshals Service, do they
have contract employees that they hire?
Judge Roth. They do. The court security officers program,
which is within the budget of the judiciary, is managed by the
Marshals Service. The court security offices provide, for
instance, the entrance guards at courthouses. They patrol
within courthouses. Their qualifications and training and the
determination of who is needed where is done under the
direction of the Marshals Service.
Senator Voinovich. So the Marshals Service is like, you
heard the testimony of Mr. Peck about the FPS, they have got a
few uniformed people that, say like in Cleveland, there are not
very many of them, but they are in charge of looking at the
security of the building and working with the judges and so
forth, and then they determine what kind of contract services
they need to run the checks and----
Judge Roth. Yes. This is done on a national basis. The
standards that are required for courthouses are established by
the Marshals Service, in coordination with our Committee on
Security and Facilities.
Senator Voinovich. Mr. Bellew, so I have a complete
understanding, the people that you represent are the
investigators and the uniformed people, for example, to go back
to Cleveland, Mr. Peck said five or six people.
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. When you are talking about increasing
the numbers of people, you are talking about increasing the
numbers of those kinds of individuals. Is that correct?
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir. This number is primarily a base
number. It was put in the legislation basically so that they
could not drop below that number. That is for all of them, yes,
Senator Voinovich. And the purpose of it is not to
eliminate contract people from being hired at these Federal
facilities, but rather, you do not think there is enough people
in the Federal Protective Service in those areas to do the job
that they are supposed to do. Is that correct?
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. All right. Is there any interest within
the FPS work force in the law enforcement and security officer
position, the new LESO position?
Mr. Bellew. The LESO position was primarily supposed to be
for putting these officers into remote locations out of the
core cities so that we would be able to provide law enforcement
to places that were not within the core cities, such as
Cincinnati, Cleveland, New York, and the larger metropolitan
cities where we do have large forces of police officers. That
was the original purpose of the LESO. That way they could have
a physical security person in that location as well as a law
The way that the position was brought about was that it was
supposed to encompass 51 percent law enforcement and 49 percent
physical security duties. Even though they received a lot of
training in both areas, that is not really what we are seeing
nationwide. Out of all 11 regions, there are only a few of them
where the people are actually in uniform. One of the primary
purposes of that was to augment the uniformed force and allow
the uniformed personnel to hold a job where they could be
fairly compensated. In some of the regions they did not even
look within the uniformed positions to begin with. What they
did was they went to college campuses and just recruited people
straight out of college that did not have any law enforcement
experience for these positions.
Senator Voinovich. So, initially, the concept was that
people would be moved up within the Federal Protective Services
into another level, because I guess they move up to another
category where they are eligible to receive better
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. But that has not been the way it has
worked out. I would really be interested if you could give me
some information on that so I would have it, on how is that
really working, and what are your concerns about it, and how
can it be improved.
But getting back to this number of new people, you just do
not think there are enough folks out there right now, and we
are not talking about contract people. I would be interested,
for example, I think they have five in the Cleveland area, how
many of the new 700 would go to Cleveland, for example?
Mr. Bellew. Well, that would----
Senator Voinovich. You do not have to answer that.
Basically, what you are saying is, from your perspective and
the perspective of your members, there just are not enough of
us out here to get the job done. Is that basically it?
Mr. Bellew. No, sir. I can give you a prime example in New
York City today, as a matter of fact. Back in 1995 FPS hired 35
what they call ``term'' police officers. These officers were
supposed to augment the permanent police officers in the World
Trade Center bombing trials, the terrorist trials. Well, their
term of duty expires on Saturday, in 2 days. What is going to
happen at that point is approximately 50 percent of the police
force there in New York City is going to lose their jobs.
New York has two primary high profile terrorist trials
coming up, the two trials of the terrorists that bombed the
embassies in Africa. We have been fighting that cutback for
weeks now, saying why are you getting rid of 50 percent of your
Federal police force when you have two huge trials coming up.
In a 1999 letter from the Attorney General's Office, Janet Reno
sent a letter to David Barram, the Administrator of General
Services Administration, requesting that these officers remain
at their post and continue funding for fiscal year 2000. And
even though Congress has funded the program, they are diverting
the funds to different locations for different purposes other
than to maintain these 35 officers in New York.
Senator Voinovich. These 35 officers were hired into the
Federal Protective Service and now they are letting them go
because they feel that they are not needed, is that it?
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. And you are saying that, from everything
that you know, they should stay there. And that is an example
of where they responded correctly by adding people, and you
would argue that there are other places in the country where
you need more people.
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. And that is where you get the 700
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. Are there any other comments that anyone
would like to make?
Senator Voinovich. Obviously, you think the legislation is
needed. Maybe the last question would be, Major Peck's and the
Deputy Inspector General's testimony indicates they think this
thing could be worked out administratively, what is your
reaction to that?
Mr. Bellew. My reaction to that is I do not believe it can
be worked out administratively for the simple fact that law
enforcement is an inherent government function. Law enforcement
is something that when you are dealing with police officers you
need to have police officers in charge. I will give you a prime
example. PBS consistently ``fences'' our funds so that the
training that we are supposed to receive or that we have
applied for never happens. Prior to the Oklahoma City bombing
trial, I instructed a civil disturbance class for police
officers that were involved with the trial and I was told that
was the first training they had received in over 7 years. Our
funds continuously get diverted to other locations. That is why
we need police officers in charge of other police officers, so
that we can receive the funds that we are supposed to receive,
conduct the training that we are supposed to conduct, and
secure the buildings.
One item I would like to bring up is that a lot of people
seem to be concerned with the divesting of security from public
buildings. Part of the legislation as written mandates that the
new Commissioner of the Federal Protective Service will
coordinate all his activities with the Commissioner of the
Public Buildings Service. It would be nothing more than a new
policy to mandate that the physical security specialists do
exactly what they are doing now. Nothing is really going to
change other than the fact that, instead of issuing guidelines
and suggestions, we would receive hard core policy that would
enable us to become the elite law enforcement force that we
Senator Voinovich. In other words, under the current
system, you do not think the FPS gets the kind of priority that
it ought to be getting, and that when decisions are being made
in terms of what do you do with the dollars, so often they flow
to the administrative side of this thing rather than they do to
the FPS? You are kind of a stepchild there, and you believe if
you were separate there would be more advocacy on the part of
the Federal Protective Service.
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir.
Senator Voinovich. In terms of advocacy, budget spending,
and also in terms of control in the local area. Do you think if
this set up had been in place that the report that came back
about the unevenness in the hired people per the contracted
people would be there? Do you think that would have improved if
this set up that you suggest was in place 5 years ago? Do you
think that would be a whole lot better today than it is if you
had had the separate police?
Mr. Bellew. Mr. Chairman, the police officers that we have
out there in the field today are well-trained. They go through
an extensive course at the Federal Law Enforcement Training
Center in Glynco, Georgia. Afterwards, they have periodic
training, in-service training, they go through a period of
field training officer orientations to ensure that they know
their jobs before they are put in the field, they undergo
rigorous background investigations by the Office of Personnel
Management, and the security officers do not. As the IG stated
earlier, there is a big problem with the number of security
officers. Approximately 10 years ago, we had about 5,000 well-
trained Federal police officers out on the street to protect
the buildings. Now, we have approximately 500.
Senator Voinovich. Well, the fact is what has happened is
that they have hired more contact employees than they had
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir. And these contract employees do not
undergo the rigorous background investigations we do, they
receive hardly any training, their management is lax, as
evidenced by the IG's report which states that a lot of them
were not certified, they were not certified properly with their
weapons. Those are just some of the problems that we have with
the security force that we have.
Senator Voinovich. So you think those contract employees
should be FPS employees? Again, I want to go back to the issue
of contract employees. Do you think those people ought to be
Federal Protection people rather than contract employees?
Mr. Bellew. That would depend on whether they would meet
the criteria. They are going to have to go through the
background investigation, which I am sure that some of them
would probably not pass, and they would have to complete the
training, which would further weed out people who were not able
to be police officers, and what you would wind up with is you
may start with 5,000 people and wind up with 600-700 good
police officers that you could field.
Senator Voinovich. Well, the question I have got is do you
think that the people that the Federal Protection Service
hires, these contract people that do some of the work, need the
same kind of background and everything else that you have for
Mr. Bellew. Yes, sir, they should. You would not want a
felon working as a security officer at your Federal buildings,
if I understand the question correctly. If they met the same
type of background investigation we do, then we would be able
to catch the fact that they were a felon or that they had
several arrests or whatever and they would not be hired, they
would not work on the contract.
Senator Voinovich. OK. I thank you very much for your
Judge Roth. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate the
opportunity to speak to you.
Mr. Bellew. Thank you.
Senator Voinovich. The record will be open until October 3d
for anyone to submit information.
The hearing is adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 11:03 a.m., the committee was adjourned, to
reconvene at the call of the Chair.]
[Additional statements submitted for the record follow:]
Statement of Hon. Joseph I. Lieberman, U.S. Senator from the State of
tribute to senator daniel patrick moynihan
This is a poignant moment for me as I acknowledge the extraordinary
contributions to American life made by my esteemed friend and
colleague, Senator Moynihan, and in doing so, bid him goodbye from the
Throughout four decades in public life, Pat Moynihan has built a
richly deserved legacy as one of our most prescient and gifted leaders.
He is both Renaissance man and someone who understands New York City's
``mean streets;''--a product of New York's Hell's Kitchen neighborhood
but also of Tufts, Harvard and the London School of Economics. He has
served his country as a statesman and a scholar, an author and an
ambassador, a counselor in four consecutive Presidential
administrations, both Democratic and Republican, and for 22 years, as
Senator from the Empire state. Ultimately, he is a man dedicated to
people, rather than party or politics.
I consider myself fortunate--and it has been an honor I will
continue to cherish--to have been given the opportunity to work beside
Pat and learn from him during the 12 years our tenures in the Senate,
and on the Environmental and Public Works Committee (EPW), overlapped.
And while Pat has accomplished so much spanning the realms of foreign
and domestic policy--I would like to take this time to honor his record
on this committee, where he has served with distinction since he was
first elected in 1977.
More than anyone I know, Senator Moynihan influences the present
with a profound understanding of the past and a prophetic view of the
future. Through innovative thinking and firm leadership, he has
demonstrated an unwavering commitment to preserving the beauty and
purity of our environment so that the solace our ancestors found in
nature may also be discovered by our descendants. This, and a skill for
working across party lines, has allowed him to exert an influence that
has dramatically improved the quality of American lives.
In what may be his crowning environmental and public works
achievement, he was chief author of the landmark Intermodal Surface
Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA). The genius of this law
is that, for the first time, it integrated transportation and
environmental policy, with a eye toward maintaining both the
infrastructure and nature, to improving both our working and our
The legislation redirected Federal surface transportation policy to
include not only highway construction but maintenance, and also a broad
array of new transportation approaches: programs to beautify our
roadways, to acquire scenic and historic sites, and to establish
pedestrian and bicycle facilities by utilizing abandoned railway
corridors. The flexibility of the bill permitted closer coordination
between transportation and clean-air programs in a deliberate effort to
avoid past conflicts between the two goals.
ISTEA also gave states greater flexibility to solve their
particular transportation needs, recognizing that different parts of
the country have opposing priorities. In some states new capacity may
be at the top of the list, while in others greater highway maintenance
takes precedence. ISTEA permitted each state to use its discretion to
better manage its transportation demands while making the most of its
Federal funds. The reforms initiated by the Senator Moynihan in ISTEA
were so successful they were continued and enhanced in the
Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century, TEA-21, which was
enacted in the last Congress.
There are many examples of Senator Moynihan's visionary leadership,
but I will mention just three more. From his first days on the
Committee on Environment and Public Works, Senator Moynihan has shown
an extraordinary gift to perceive problems before they catch the public
eye. He and his New York colleague, the late Senator Jacob Javits, were
the first Senators to respond to the Love Canal crisis, calling for a
swift state and national response to help the families cope with a
hazard that existed, literally, in their backyards. His empathy for the
victims of Love Canal and his commitment to protecting others from
similar tragedies led to his close involvement in the development of
the Superfund program.
Senator Moynihan must also be recognized as the originator of acid
rain legislation. As early as 1979, he foresaw the potential
consequences of acid rain on our forests and streams and rigorously
fought to address the problem. While the legislation underwent changes
in conference, Senator Moynihan's bill eventually emerged as an
important 10-year research program that ultimately became one of the
Federal Government's largest scientific studies outside of NASA. His
work on acid rain became the foundation for strong Clean Air Act
legislation on this issue. Through the years he has continued to play a
prominent role in protecting air quality in New York and throughout the
Finally, Senator Moynihan has long held a deep appreciation for the
beauty, grandeur and historical meaning of public buildings and their
role in our daily lives. He led the effort to transform Pennsylvania
Avenue from a neglected slum into a boulevard that rivals any of the
great capitals of Europe. He played an instrumental role in the
renovation of the exquisite building that is Union Station in
Washington D.C., and the incomparable Penn Station in Manhattan, and
remains an active member of the Smithsonian Institution's Board of
Reagents. The return to quality architecture in government buildings is
in significant part testimony to his understanding that public
buildings must better represent the aims and aspirations of our nation.
It is safe to say, no other Senator in the last half century has had a
more enduring impact on preserving our heritage through public
Senator Moynihan and his life's work, on the Environment and Public
Works Committee and in all aspects of his illustrious career, have
touched my life and the lives of all Americans in profound ways. I know
his departure will be deeply felt, particularly by me for whom he has
been more than a mentor: a guiding light, a great teacher, and an
inspiration. I wish him all the best.
Statement of Hon. James A. Traficant, Jr., U.S. Representative from the
State of Ohio
I want to thank the Chairman Voinovich and Ranking Senator Max
Baucus, for holding this hearing on H.R. 809, the ``Federal Protective
Service Reform Act.'' As the author of this legislation, which has
received bipartisan support. I hope that the committee will approve the
bill and move it to the Senate floor as soon as possible.
I have been working for the past 6 years to improve Federal
building security. This bill will make a big difference. It will put us
in a position where we can harness the professionalism of the Federal
Protective Service and thus reduce the likelihood of another Oklahoma
Good security starts and ends with good people. One of the keys to
dramatically improving building security is having a well-trained
professional police force led by experienced law enforcement and
security professionals--not real estate managers. Congress also needs
to clearly establish, by statute, FPS's mission and jurisdiction.
H.R. 809 will achieve all of these goals.
Why is this legislation needed? Because security is best provided
by police officers--not real estate managers! Low manpower levels, a
flawed management structure, and the increasing use of unqualified
contract guards are seriously compromising the ability of FPS to do its
For example, FPS is part of GSA's real estate management arm, the
Public Building Service. As such, the head of FPS does not have command
and control authority over FPS
regional directors. Regional FPS directors are required to report
directly to Public Building Service regional administrators--
individuals with no law enforcement experience!
In addition, the majority of FPS regional directors have no law
enforcement or intelligence experience.
One example I would like to cite is the proposal to construct a new
child care center in the Celebrezze Building in Cleveland, Ohio. PBS
blatantly ignored the recommendations of the Joint Security Task Force
and proposed placing the center adjacent to the building's loading dock
FPS objected to this proposal, but the matter is still pending.
It is clear that an independent FPS could that its security
recommendations are taken seriously and have equal footing with other
H.R. 809 embodies the FPS-related recommendations made in a 1995
Justice Department study conducted in the wake of the April 19, 1995
bombing of the Murrah building in Oklahoma City. The study's
recommendations, which included upgrading the position of FPS within
GSA, were endorsed by the FBI, Marshals Service, Department of Defense,
Secret Service, State Department and Administrative Office of the U.S.
I would also point out that a 1996 review conducted for GSA by
Arthur Andersen strongly recommended that FPS be made a stand-alone
service within GSA. Unfortunately, through four separate hearings
conducted over the past 2 years by the House Transportation and
Infrastructure Committee, PBS never once mentioned this key study.
I want to note for the record that House committee staff had
lengthy discussions with key PBS officials about this legislation. We
offered to negotiate all provisions in the bill if PBS would agree to
give full ``command and control'' authority to the head of FPS. The
answer was a resounding ``no.''
H.R. 809 has been strongly endorsed by every major law enforcement
organization in the country, including the National Fraternal Order of
Police, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association and the
International Brotherhood of Police Officers.
I want to also note for the record that the House worked closely
with the Department of Justice and the Secret Service to resolve some
minor concerns they had over the wording of the original bill. All of
their concerns were addressed in a manager's amendment approved by the
Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
The only issue that has been contentious, as far as the Public
Building Service is concerned, is whether or not FPS should be a stand-
alone service within GSA.
On this issue I side with the law enforcement community.
The fact is, the entire law enforcement community believes that
making FPS a stand-alone service within GSA is essential to upgrading
and improving Federal building security.
Mr. Chairman, this bill is much needed and long overdue. The sad
reality is that since Oklahoma City, the terrorist threat to Federal
buildings--foreign and domestic--has increased dramatically. Right now,
we are still unprepared to deal with this threat.
H.R. 809 will give us a fighting chance to effectively combat
terrorism. I urge its expeditious approval.
Statement of Hon. Robert A. Peck, Commissioner, Public Buildings
Service, General Services Administration
Good morning Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee. I am Bob
Peck, Commissioner of the Public Buildings Service. With me today is
Clarence Edwards, Assistant Commissioner for the Federal Protective
Service. Thank you for the opportunity to update you on our progress in
improving security in GSA-owned and leased buildings and to express our
concerns regarding H.R. 809.
It goes almost without saying that we have no more important
responsibility than providing for the security of the tenants and
visitors in our buildings. As I've said before, we need to provide that
security while maintaining friendly, inviting, public buildings. No
Since the heinous bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in
Oklahoma City in 1995, we have tripled our annual spending on security
to over $250 million per year, increased the number of Federal
Protective Officers to 582 (this includes both our traditional Federal
police officers (FPO) and our new law enforcement security of ricers
(LESOs), as of July 31), and doubled the number of contract guards to
We are also improving our security in qualitative ways that go
beyond numbers. Many in our Federal Protective Service (FPS) are
embracing the changes; some are not and would like to see FPS divorced
from PBS and made an independent arm of GSA. We oppose that change.
First, here's what our changes in FPS are all about. We started by
defining the FPS mission and objective; they had not been clear before.
The objective is for FPS to become the best facilities security
organization in the world. The principal mission is building security,
by which we mean protecting the affected facility, its tenants,
visitors and their property from harm. As Assistant Commissioner
Edwards, a veteran police officer and our top FPS official, says: FPS
is not a police organization; it is a facility security organization
with law enforcement authority.
We are changing training, job definitions and tactics to carry out
this mission. We have created the new LESO position, which will become
the core position in FPS. LESOs get both full law enforcement and
physical security training. LESOs have full arrest authority and carry
weapons. They wear police uniforms or plain clothes depending on the
needs of the day. Their job is to be responsible for security in a
given geographical area: to oversee physical security precautions and
to deal with emergencies. LESOs are being deployed so as to extend our
protective services to locations not previously covered.
We already have about 79 on board, 62 of them former FPS officers
or Physical Security Specialists (PSS); another 76 LESO positions are
in the recruitment process. Not coincidentally, the new position starts
and tops out at GS levels above where the general FPS officer position
currently starts and tops out.
We have added a special 2-week FPS orientation course to the 8-week
basic police training our recruits get at the Federal Law Enforcement
Training Center in Glynco, Georgia. We have also created a 4-week
Physical Security Academy that is quickly becoming known
We have adopted the ``community policing'' tactics that have taken
police officers out of their cars and back on the streets in cities and
Federal facilities around the country (open on foot, sometimes on
bicycles, which we are using, too). The idea is to be out and about to
deter incidents, not to wait for a 911 call after incidents have
occurred. We call it ``customer oriented policing'' and it means our
officers, whether LESOs or FPOs, will spend more time in and around the
buildings we lease and operate. We expect this to yield two additional
benefits: 1) our customers, who pay security surcharges that partially
fund FPS (which is also supported by regular rent payments), will
actually see more of our highly qualified in-house security experts,
and 2) we'll be able to convert our tenants into more effective eyes
and ears, alerting us to possible problems, whether malfunctioning
equipment or workplace situations that pose a threat.
We have deployed a terrific new software package for use by our
Physical Security Specialists and LESOs in identifying the threats
against each of our locations and evaluating how to respond to those
threats. It may have been the quickest and most successful single
rollout of a software application I've seen in PBS.
All the experts say that intelligence is the most important weapon
against those who plan violent acts. Our Criminal Investigators (CI's)
have all received intelligence analysis training and are involved with
highly effective liaison efforts with the Federal intelligence-
gathering agencies, like the FBI. We have upgraded our secure
communications equipment, too. Additionally, the CI's are being trained
in the new Regional Threat Assessment Methodology.
Finally, we have upgraded requirements in our contract guard
contracts and put FPS officers in charge of monitoring training
quality. Security guards are now required to have 100 hours of
training, higher academic standard, and consistent firearms training.
In all of this training and job redefinition, we are acknowledging
that our security personnel are like their other PBS colleagues: there
will never be enough of us to do all of the hands-on work that needs to
get done; rather, PBS employees do the work that is inherently
governmental and manage contractors and use technology to multiply our
Now, why do we oppose making FPS a separate arm of GSA? Principally
because it would divorce security from other Federal building functions
when the opposite needs to be the case: security needs to be tightly
integrated into decisions about the location, design and operation of
Federal buildings. Divorcing FPS would create an organizational barrier
between protection experts and the PBS asset managers, planners,
project managers and building managers who set PBS budgets and policies
for our inventory as a whole and who oversee the day-to-day operations
in our buildings.
The security we provide is financed out of rent revenues collected
by the Public Buildings Service from our building tenants. Those
tenants understandably look directly to PBS for responses to their
security questions and needs. A separate GSA security service would be
confusing to them and would lead to confusion about who is responsible
for what in GSA's security efforts. It is also contrary to other agency
efforts to present our customers with a seamless GSA, which is capable
of offering more integrated housing solutions.
The relationship between FPS and PBS is like that of the U.S. Park
Police and the National Park Service. The Park Police are a component
of the National Park Service and not a separate bureau of the
Department of the Interior. The Park Police patrol and protect
properties that fall under the auspices of the Park Service, just as
FPS patrols and protects properties under the auspices of the Public
Buildings Service. The Department of the Interior has found, just as
GSA has, that the protection function needs to be fully integrated with
the other aspects of property preservation, operation and management.
In closing, I thank the subcommittee for this opportunity to
discuss security at GSA-controlled facilities. We are pleased that both
the GAO and the IG recognize the significant progress we've made in
improving the security of Federal buildings. we look forward to working
with the subcommittee on this issue.
This concludes my prepared statement. We would be pleased to answer
any questions you may have.
General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service,
October 10, 2000.
The Honorable George V. Voinovich, Chairman,
Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
Committee on Environment and Public Works,
Washington, DC 20510
Dear Mr. Chairman: During the hearing before your Subcommittee on
Transportation and Infrastructure on September 28, 2000, you raised
concerns about the security of the new child care center planned for
the A. J. Celebrezze Federal Building, Cleveland, OH. Specifically, you
stated it was unclear to you whether GSA might, due to financial
constraints, proceed with placing the new child care center in a
location deemed unsafe. I would like to set the record straight on the
status of this project and our position on placement of the new center.
The safety and security of the children in our Federal buildings is
a responsibility we take very seriously. Although the existing child
care center in the Celebrezze building does not meet all current GSA
child care center guidelines, a new center is presently in the design
phase. The approved design, including the site selection, will be
consistent with current security criteria. No final decision on exact
location for the center has been made at this point. A site security
survey has been completed, and we are using appropriate security risk
factors in evaluating design options. If the approved design option
includes prospectus level construction, we certainly will seek
appropriate congressional authority for the project before proceeding
I hope this addresses any concerns you may have with this project.
It might be helpful for your Cleveland staff to have a tour of the
Celebrezze building and potential child care sites to get a better
understanding of the design options. Mr. James Whitlock, our Assistant
Regional Administrator, Public Buildings Service, Great Lakes Region,
can arrange a tour. He can be reached at (312) 353-5572.
If you need additional information, please have a member of your
staff contact Mr. Paul Chistolini, Deputy Commissioner, Public
Buildings Service, at (202) 501-1100.
Robert A. Peck, Commissioner.
Statement of Joel S. Gallay, Deputy Inspector General, Office of
Inspector General, U.S. General Services Administration
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee: We appreciate the
opportunity to come before this subcommittee to discuss the views of
this Office on H.R. 809, the Federal Protective Service Reform Act.
This bill would generally restructure the Federal Protective Service
within the General Services Administration (GSA), grant expanded law
enforcement authority to Federal Protective Service officers and
investigators and make changes regarding pay structure, contract guard
training and number of police officers.
Our Office has done a significant amount of work in recent years
relating to Federal building security in general and to Federal
Protective Service operations in particular. Much of this work was
spurred by Federal initiatives to upgrade Federal building security
after the bombing of the Alfred Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma
City. We have reviewed GSA's installation of security equipment, the
adequacy of data base documentation of security upgrades, and the
proper usage of security enhancement funds. In the past few years, we
have also reviewed the functions and operations of both the Federal
Protective Service criminal investigator and contract guard programs.
The Federal Protective Service (FPS) is responsible for protecting
Federal employees and property in Federal buildings owned or leased by
GSA. To meet this responsibility, FPS performs both law enforcement and
physical security functions. The FPS work force includes uniformed
police officers and nonuniformed officers, including criminal
investigators and physical security specialists. FPS currently
supervises over 6,000 contract guards. The FPS function of guarding and
securing Federal buildings has been a part of GSA's Public Buildings
Service (PBS) since 1949.
The centerpiece of the bill under your consideration today is the
proposal to remove FPS from PBS and establish it as a separate
operating service of GSA. This new service would be headed by a
Commissioner who would be appointed by and report directly to the GSA
Administrator. The Commissioner of FPS would be required to have at
least 5 years of law enforcement experience in a command or supervisory
position. That Commissioner, in turn, would appoint the Regional
Directors and Assistant Commissioners for FPS. These Directors or
Assistant Commissioners would be required to have 5 years direct law
enforcement experience, including at least 2 years in a supervisory
We agree that improvements are needed in the existing FPS
structure. We strongly believe there needs to be a direct chain of
command and line of authority between the FPS headquarters in
Washington, D.C. and FPS field personnel. We also support the
requirements in the bill for the FPS head,
Assistant Commissioners and Regional Directors to have law
enforcement experience. We believe these provisions are particularly
critical insofar as FPS performs a law enforcement function. Law
enforcement agencies, including those (like Offices Inspectors General)
which operate within larger non-law enforcement agencies, are
traditionally staffed by professional law enforcement personnel with a
direct chain of command from the headquarters level to the field level.
This structure assures more effective oversight of the use of law
enforcement authorities, the development and implementation of training
requirements, and consistent application of policies and procedures--
particularly important with respect to matters such as jurisdiction and
use of deadly force.
We think that most outsiders would be surprised to learn that,
while the FPS Assistant Commissioner here in Washington is the nominal
``head'' of the FPS, he can only issue policy guidance; he does not
have command and control over the FPS Directors in the 11 GSA regions.
These directors, only 2 of whom currently have law enforcement
experience, report to Assistant Regional Administrators for PBS in the
regions and not to FPS headquarters.
Two of our audits serve to illustrate some of the problems inherent
in this organizational structure. In our examination several years ago
of the criminal investigator program within FPS, we found that criminal
investigator activities in the field were generally operating
autonomously, with no program accountability or measurable performance
standards. We reported that the criminal investigators resided in a
fragmented organization, with unbalanced staffing resources, disparate
lines of authority and inconsistent approaches to implementing
investigative guidelines from region to region. We also found the
criminal investigator program lacked a useful management information
system as well as a centralized system for identifying and developing
specialized training needs. In addition, we noted the following
Investigator staffing varied widely between regions--from
one criminal investigator per 641 buildings in one region to one
criminal investigator per 42 buildings in another.
Investigators in some regions reported to experienced
lead investigators or Special Agents in Charge; others reported to
various non-investigatory personnel.
Inconsistent interpretations of law enforcement
authorities and application of policies raised concerns of whether the
safety of Federal employees was being compromised. Although we
performed this review 3 years ago, our information is that the
conditions reported in this audit are similar now and, in some cases,
Similar problems were noted in another audit we issued in March of
this year, in which we examined FPS management of the contract guard
program. As you are aware, GSA contracts with private security firms
for both armed and unarmed guards at Federal facilities. As noted,
there are currently over 6,000 contract security guards nationwide. FPS
central office has been trying to create a national program with
standards to be applied to all GSA guard contracts. FPS central office
determined that five program areas should be standardized in all
regional guard contracts. These included guard training, weapons and
ammunition, guard eligibility, a basic written examination, and
suitability and certification requirements. Our review of this program
concluded that an absence of programmatic controls and oversight has
led to operational breakdowns and questionable practices at the
regional levels. Specifically we noted:
Hundreds of guards were on post without valid suitability
determinations. Guards lacked necessary to perform their duties.
Armed guards were on post without any firearms training
or they were overdue for firearms qualifications. Contract enforcement
and oversight was not consistent. There was no consistent policy on
Guard services were being procured by purchase orders and
were not then subjected to critical program requirements.
In addition to formal audits, we have addressed a number of
situations over the last few years in which regional FPS employees have
acted in violation of or contrary to established national policy. Those
situations have included the following:
Several instances of FPS officers carrying firearms off-
duty; one instance of an FPS officer firing a warning shot while off-
A number of instances of FPS officers carrying firearms
without having been properly qualified;
FPS in one region issuing badges and credentials to non-
law enforcement personnel and issuing badges and credentials bearing
unauthorized titles and endorsement signatures; and
A FPS supervisor in a region authorizing the issuance of
shotguns, which FPS officers are neither qualified nor authorized to
The clear message in these audits and other reviews is that FPS
would greatly benefit from an organizational overhaul to improve its
ability to effect implementation of consistent policies and procedures
and to better handle disciplinary issues. By requiring law enforcement
experience at both the central office at the supervisory level in the
regions and by providing that the FPS head would appoint the Regional
Directors in the field, H.R. 809 takes several steps toward this
organizational overhaul. In one regard, though, we believe that this
part of the bill could be strengthened. Currently, the bill provides
only that the FPS head ``appoint'' Assistant Commissioners and Regional
Directors. In order to ensure direct lines of authority between central
office and the GSA regions, we suggest that the bill also provide that
the Regional Directors (and Assistant Commissioners) Report to'' the
FPS head and not the various senior regional officials..
We do not believe, however, that FPS necessarily needs to be
removed from PBS in order to effectuate the changes in chain of command
for purposes of strengthening FPS's law enforcement functions. In our
view, these changes can be made within PBS. This would achieve the
much-needed improvements in command and control over law enforcement
functions, while meeting the coordination and other concerns PBS has
with the proposal to remove FPS entirely.
Under H.R. 809, the new FPS Commissioner would serve as the ``law
enforcement officer and security official of the United States with
respect to the protection of Federal officers and employees in
buildings and areas that are owned or occupied by the United States and
under the charge and control of the Administrator.'' We believe that
this broad designation of the new Commissioner as the ``security
official of the United States'' for the protection of Federal buildings
is generally unworkable and adds confusion to what are in fact
legitimate and important security functions that are exercised by PBS.
Security is a multi-faceted area, and involves aspects of building
location, design, planning, and operations. Building location, design
and planning would clearly seem generally the province of PBS. On an
individual building operations level, building security and safety is
the responsibility of FPS and the Building Security Committee (BSC) for
that building, with support of the building manager and other building
This bill's proposed removal of FPS from PBS and its designation of
the FPS head as the ``security official for the United States'' leave
unanswered several critical questions: What security functions would
remain in PBS and what security functions would be transferred to FPS?
Clearly building security design functions should remain the
responsibility of PBS, while police activities and supervising guard
forces should be the responsibility of FPS. In between, however, lies a
gray area where the decisions on division of responsibility and
transfer of functions are not very easy. Who would decide on the
location of guard posts and whether they are armed posts? Who would
decide on locations of security equipment? Currently, the BSC for each
Federal building, which is made up of tenant representatives and a FPS
security specialist, and is supported by the building manager, make
many of these decisions. How would removing FPS from PBS change this
process? Would it help or hinder the process?
We believe that, even under the current organization, better
coordination of the building security function is needed. We have
concerns FPS a stand-alone service in GSA may not be an immediate cure
for, and may even exacerbate, some of the problems we have seen in
recent years, such as in GSA's efforts to upgrade security equipment at
Federal facilities. There, we issued a series of alert reports in which
we reported on repeated instances of missing, uninstalled and non-
operational security equipment and many inaccuracies in the data bases
on the status of this equipment. Based on conditions we discussed in
these reports, PBS reported a material weakness for purposes of the
Federal Managers Financial Integrity Act. Ultimately, the problems
there were a failure of coordination, between and among central office
and the region, FPS security personnel and customer agency officials,
and FPS and the building managers. Whatever organization may result
from this legislation or GSA's own efforts, a strong linkage between
FPS and PBS needs to be developed and maintained in the area of
Law Enforcement Authority
H.R. 809 would give FPS special police--renamed ``police
officers''--general law enforcement authority, including the authority
to carry firearms, seek and execute arrest and search warrants, and
make warrantless arrests under specified circumstances. We support this
provision. It is a much-needed clarification of the uniformed officer's
law enforcement authorities, which, under current law, have to be
somewhat assumed or implied. We also agree with the changes made in the
bill from earlier versions to limit these authorities to use while on
duty and subject to regulations approved by the Attorney General.
The bill would make a minor change to the law enforcement
authorities exercised by the nonuniformed offficers of FPS--renamed by
the bill ``criminal investigators''--but appears to leave those
authorities mostly the same as they exist currently. This leads,
however, to an unfortunate, and likely unintended anomaly--the criminal
investigators would exercise different, and mostly lesser, law
enforcement authorities than the new police officers. For example,
nonuniformed officers (or special agents) could arrest without a
warrant only for felonies; the new police officers could arrest for
misdemeanors and felonies. In addition, nonuniformed officers do not
have express authority to seek and execute search warrants; the new
police officers would. We know of no operational imperatives that would
favor such a result. We would advocate changing the bill to give the
new special agents the same law enforcement authorities as the new
police officers. We would also suggest making those authorities subject
to regulatory supervision of the Attorney General.
Contract Guard Program
Finally, we would like to briefly mention the provision of the FPS
bill which would require the new Commissioner of FPS to prescribe
minimum standards of suitability for employment to be applied in the
contracting of security personnel. In the last few years, FPS has taken
significant steps toward creating a national program for the contract
guards. The program devised by FPS included the development of minimum
training standards for all guards and the creation and implementation
of national certification guidelines and other procedures to be
followed in all guard contracts. However, our March 2000 audit of the
contract guard program, which we discussed earlier, shows, however,
that many of these efforts have fallen short. As we already noted, we
identified literally hundreds of instances where guards were on post at
GSA-controlled facilities without the initial suitability check and, in
some instances, despite unfavorable adjudication determinations. In
addition, over 100 guards were overdue for required re-certifications
and numerous background checks were in pending status for more than 1
The critical problem here, though, is not necessarily one of a lack
of standards--FPS has already devised minimum standards for training
and suitability. Rather, our review indicates it is a lack of
consistent implementation in the regions, coupled with inadequate
resources to provide effective oversight of the guard contracts. The
problem to be addressed, therefore, whether through this legislation or
by the agency itself, is ensuring that policy and procedures issued by
FPS headquarters are effectively enforced in the regions.
In the end, regardless of how the issues regarding FPS may be
resolved, for something as important as security of Federal employees
and property, any restructuring must take into account the need for
clearer lines of responsibility and accountability.
Mr. Chairman, this concludes my formal statement. I would be
pleased to answer any questions the subcommittee members might have.
Statement of Judge Jane R. Roth, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee: My name is Jane Roth.
I serve as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third
Circuit and as Chairman of the Judicial Conference's Committee on
Security and Facilities. Thank you for the opportunity to appear before
you today to discuss H.R. 809, the ``Federal Protective Service Reform
Act of 2000.''
In March 2000 the Judicial Conference of the United States resolved
that H.R; 809 be amended to make clear that, should this bill be
enacted into law, it would not diminish or interfere with the statutory
authority of the United States Marshals Service (USMS) to provide
security for the Federal judiciary. The USMS authority to provide
security for the judges, judicial employees, witnesses, and jurors
derives from 28 U.S.C. Sec. 566. The Judicial Conference recommends
that the following amendment be added to H.R. 809 as a new Section 11:
None of the provisions of this Act shall be construed to interfere
with, supersede, or otherwise affect the authority of the United States
Marshals Service to provide security for the Federal judiciary pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. Sec. 566.
Prior to 1982 the General Services Administration (GSA) and the
USMS shared responsibility for security inside Federal courthouses.
Under this shared responsibility, security in courthouses was
inadequate. In 1982 Chief Justice Warren Burger and Attorney General
William French Smith, in cooperation with GSA, agreed that the USMS
should assume primary responsibility and authority to provide security
and protective services in Federal buildings housing court operations.
In order to assist with implementation of this agreement, the USMS
received delegated authority from the GSA Administrator to contract for
guards in court-occupied space. In 1983, as part of a joint judicial
and executive branch initiative, the USMS established the Judicial
Facility Security Program. As a result of this agreement and its
subsequent implementation, the USMS assumed responsibility for all
security inside courthouses and GSA retained responsibility for
security outside courthouses.
The judiciary believes the Judicial Facility Security Program has
proven to be efficient and effective and that it should be continued.
We are concerned that Section 6 of H.R. 809 could be read to
infringe upon the role of the USMS to provide security in court-
occupied space because it gives authority to the newly created position
of Federal Protective Service Commissioner to serve as the government's
law enforcement of fleer in buildings under control of the GSA
Administrator. In addition, Section 9 of the bill could be read to
change the responsibility for contract guard employment standards.
Currently, the USMS uses standards of suitability which it has
developed for employment of contract guards. The judiciary wants to
ensure that enactment of this proposed legislation will not lead to a
change in this arrangement.
We believe the amendment proposed by the Judicial Conference would
only clarify the intent of H.R. 809. The report of the House Committee
on Transportation and Infrastructure (H. Rept. 106-676) which
accompanied the bill to the House floor states:
This legislation enhances the FPS, and has no impact on the
facilities secured by the Secret Service, Federal Bureau of
Investigation and United States Marshals Service. Because report
language is non-binding, the judiciary believes that language in the
proposed bill itself is necessary.
We also believe that the USMS and GSA do not support any
interference with the authority of the USMS as found in 28 U.S.C.
Sec. 566, and affirmatively support continuance of the Judicial
Facility Security Program.
I would be happy to answer any questions that you may have and,
once again, thank you for the opportunity to appear before the
Responses by Judge Roth to Additional Questions from Senator Voinovich
Question 1. Notwithstanding the U.S. Marshals Service issue you
discuss in your testimony, do you have any other concerns about H.R.
Response. In our experience, the current management structure in
which FPS reports to the PBS has worked well. Because the design and
construction of buildings and security are so interrelated, this
organizational structure has allowed us to address building security
issues in a global rather than piecemeal way. We are concerned that
H.R. 809, because it changes the organizational structure, may make it
more difficult to coordinate security issues.
Question 2. How is the current relationship between the U.S.
Marshals Service and the FPS working?
Response. We believe that, as a general rule, security
responsibility and authority should not be bifurcated. The USMS has
expressed agreement with this position. The USMS currently has most of
the responsibility for interior security in buildings in which the
judiciary is the main tenant, and FPS has responsibility for exterior
security. The judiciary has requested that the USMS extend its
responsibility to the exterior of these buildings, using judiciary-
funded court security officers managed by the USMS. We are of the
opinion that such an extension will enhance security by lessening the
problems associated with coordination, authority, and accountability
between the two agencies. We would prefer to put responsibility for
such an interior/exterior security coordination in the hands of the
USMS because of the statutory designation of the USMS as the provider
of security to the courts. To date, neither we nor the USMS have been
able to resolve with GSA or FPS this problem of bifurcated security.
Question 3. Are there additional issues concerning the U.S.
Marshals Service outside the jurisdiction of this committee that you
would like to address?
Response. We are very concerned about the diminishing number of
deputy marshals authorized for the Marshals Service. We have been
advised that the marshals are currently 600 positions below what they
were previously authorized (about 300 positions are deputy marshals).
The loss of deputy positions compels the USMS to hire off-duty police
officers to handle prisoners and provide courtroom security. In
addition, the USMS has too many competing duties, such as fugitive
apprehensions, which further distract their deputies from their
security responsibilities. We are very concerned that the marshals have
a sufficient number of deputies to provide the judiciary with a quality
In addition, we would like to see more stability in USMS
leadership. We have seen some shifting of priorities in the USMS which
may be attributable to the frequent changes in their leadership. We do
not think this has served judicial security well. We think
consideration should be given to selecting as director of the USMS
individuals with high-level security and Federal law enforcement
experience to serve a fixed-term political appointment, similar to the
statutory process used to appoint the Director of the FBI. We strongly
feel that judicial security requires a USMS that is professional,
stable, fully staffed, well managed, and focused on its primary
statutory mission to protect the judiciary.
Statement of Steven Bellew, Vice Chairman, Fraternal Order of Police
Federal Protective Service Labor Committee
Good Morning Mr. Chairman, Ranking Member Baucus, and members of
the subcommittee; and thank you for giving me the opportunity to appear
before you today.
My name is Steven Bellew, and I am a Federal Protective Service
Police Officer from Dallas, Texas, and Vice Chairman of the Fraternal
Order of Police-FPS Labor Committee. I am here today at the request of
Gilbert G. Gallegos, National President of the Grand Lodge Fraternal
Order of Police--the nation's largest organization of law enforcement
professionals--to testify about the importance of enacting into law
H.R. 809, the ``Federal Protective Service Reform Act.''
As you know, there is a pressing need to enhance Federal building
security. This is an issue of the utmost importance to members of this
committee, FPS of ricers, Federal employees, and the millions of
Americans who visit Federal buildings every day. In the wake of the
Oklahoma City bombing and the deaths of 168 innocent people in 1995,
many in the Congress and the Federal Protective Service sought ways to
ensure that such a senseless loss of life would never happen again.
This cowardly attack served as a startling reminder that the United
States is not immune to acts of terrorism, and underscored the need for
increased protection at America's Federal buildings provided by a
highly skilled and qualified organization of law enforcement
professionals. We believe this need is answered by the ``Federal
Protective Service Reform Act.''
In the 5-years since the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal
Building, much has been done to enhance Federal building security and
public safety. However, the General Services Administration and the
Public Building Service have proven themselves unwilling or unable to
implement those reforms which are most necessary to address several
current problems within the Federal Protective Service. First and
foremost, is the internal dismantling and weakening of the FPS, and the
duties they are asked to perform on a daily basis. Over the last
several years, The Public Building Service has moved FPS away from its
traditional focus on patrol and response activities to placing a
greater reliance on State and local law enforcement to act as first
responders to critical incidents in major U.S. cities. One example of
this, Mr. Chairman, is the current situation in New York City. In 1994,
GSA hired approximately 35 ``term'' police officers to supplement the
existing force and provide enhanced security during the World Trade
Center bombing Dials. These are fully sworn and trained law enforcement
officers who have completed the 10 week police training course at the
Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) in Glynco, Georgia.
They are currently responsible for providing law enforcement services
at the Federal Civic Center; consisting of 26 Federal Plaza, 290
Broadway, 40 Foley Square, the U.S. Court of International Trade, 1 St.
Andrews Plaza, the U.S. District Court, 500 Pearl Street, the Bureau of
Prisons facility at the Manhattan Correctional Center, and Federal
facilities in Newark, New Jersey.
Last year, the General Services Administration planned to reduce
the level of FPS officers in that region at the end of Fiscal Year
1999, effective October 1. This prompted a letter from Attorney General
Janet Reno to Mr. David Barram requesting that GSA continue to provide
the same level of protective services in the region in Fiscal Year
2000, at the previously authorized level. It is now 1 year later, and
GSA is again attempting to cut the Federal Protective Service force in
the region by roughly 50 percent While it is true that the World Trade
Center bombing trials have concluded, there is a potentially greater
threat posed by the commencement of the African Embassy bombing trials
of individuals associated with the terrorist network of Osama bin
Laden. This shortsighted move has again raised questions, including
those from U.S. Representative Carolyn Maloney, whose constituents face
the greatest danger from weakened security at Federal facilities in New
The second pressing problem is the lack of law enforcement
experience in front line management. Under the current structure,
Federal Protective Service officers in the various regions are overseen
by the regional administrators of the Public Building Service. In
addition, at least five of the Regional FPS Directors, who report to
Assistant Regional Administrators in the 11 regions, do not have law
enforcement backgrounds. The Assistant Commissioner of FPS, Mr.
Clarence Edwards, exercises no direct control and has been relegated
largely to an advisory and policymaking role, despite having over 20
years of command level law enforcement experience. Thus the
effectiveness of the FPS as a law enforcement agency is severely
crippled by the fact that the Commissioner does not have direct command
and control authority over his officers across the nation, nor over
such vital issues as funding and personnel.
This view has also been expressed by other Federal law enforcement
agencies. In the Vulnerability Assessment of Federal Facilities,
conducted primarily by the Department of Justice and the U.S. Marshals
Service after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, several
recommendations were made to upgrade the capabilities of FPS.
Specifically, the Report noted that ``the placement of FPS within the
organizational structure of GSA [under the Public Building Service] may
have limited the ability of FPS to obtain the resources to assure
appropriate security in large, multi-tenant facilities, even when the
security needs have been well-defined.'' The Report went on to
recommend that FPS, and not the Public Buildings Service, should be
responsible for providing security services for GSA-controlled
facilities, improving the standards for contract guards, and be
responsible for the implementation and maintenance of a centralized
physical security data base of all Federal of flee buildings. Finally,
the heavy reliance of the General Services Administration on the use of
contract security guards to provide the bulk of protective services in
America's Federal buildings presents serious security concerns. As a
whole, private contract security guards do not receive the same level
or quality of training as do FPS police of ricers, who are required to
attend the 10-week police training course at FLETC in Glynco, Georgia,
followed by various in-service training programs. While the use of
contract guards by GSA has been steadily increasing over the years, the
number of full-time police officers has declined. This decline was
appropriately noted in the House Transportation and Infrastructure
Committee report on H.R. 809 (H. Rpt. 106-676, pg. 5):
``Since 1971, the work force of both PBS and FPS has steadily
shrunk. In 1971, total employment of Federal Protective Officers
(FPO's) exceeded 4,500. By 1995, the FPO force had been reduced to less
than 500. At the same time, [the] contract guard work force had grown
from 700, to over 2,500. The total protective force stood at 3,000,
while the PBS inventory had grown by 70 million square feet of space,
from 230 million square feet of space in the 1970's to over 300 million
in 1995. The extent of protective personnel coverage had shrunk
dramatically.'' The committee also noted that by 1995, guard functions
in Oklahoma City had been so reduced, that a single contract guard, who
also provided protection for two other Federal buildings, was
responsible for patrolling the Murrah Building.
How does this legislation address the problems which have been
outlined above? The primary goal of H.R. 809 is simple: to reestablish
the Federal Protective Service as an elite Federal law enforcement
agency with a well-trained, professionally led, and highly motivated
cadre of officers. This legislation correctly addresses the current
problems within FPS; namely the status of the agency within the General
Services Administration, the need for additional fully sworn and
qualified police officers, unclear lines of authority and jurisdiction,
and non-competitive salary and benefits for its of ricers.
H.R. 809 will enhance the safety of America's Federal buildings in
a number of important ways. First, the legislation provides for the
separation of FPS from the Public Building Service--the Federal
Government's real estate management agency--and elevates the agency
within GSA. By placing the Federal Protective Service outside of the
Public Buildings Service, the legislation will ensure that law
enforcement is given the same level of consideration as property
management, and not as a secondary concern of PBS. There are several
benefits to this approach, many of which were outlined in a 1996 GSA-
requested Arthur Andersen study, entitled Federal Operations Review
Model (FORM. Federal Protective Service. Conducted by a review team
which included several GSA employees, the study concluded that of the
recommendations for FPS contained in the 1995 Vulnerability Assessment,
``elevation is most advantageous to the government as it will provide
for costs savings as well as enable FPS to be self-financing.'' Having
recommended that FPS be elevated to a Service Line organization
reporting directly to the Administrator of GSA, the study further
concluded that this would recognize the priority of security in the
Federal environment, ensure a direct funding mechanism for Federal
security, provide savings on overhead costs, and streamline the
management and reporting structure.
The Fraternal Order of Police continues to believe that separation
and elevation of the Federal Protective Service is the only sure way of
improving the effectiveness and capabilities of the agency. Not only
would this move establish direct command and with a definitive
explanation for the agency's refusal to implement this provision, the
OIG concluded that:
GSA management did not support the requirement for a
larger uniformed protective unit, evidenced by the fact that whenever
funding and FTE positions became available, these additional resources
were directed into an alternative protection program even after P.L.
100-440 was enacted;
While agency management did not seek to increase its
uniformed police force, GSA made no effort to inform or attempt to work
with Congress to get the law changed until 1995;
Despite the fact that Senate Report 100-387 (June 17,
1988) directed GSA to fund the hiring of additional Federal Protective
Of ricers (FPO) using funds appropriated for real property operations,
GSA used available funds to hire Physical Security Specialists and
increase contract guard services;
In Fiscal Year 1990, the evidence indicated that the
agency's internal budget directives did not provide for an increase in
regional FPO positions. Not only were the FPO ranks not increased, but
GSA also permitted the number of officers to decline significantly; and
``The fact that responsible agency managers knew of the
law and neither took action to comply with it nor reported non-
compliance during past years' Federal Managers' Financial Integrity Act
(FMFIA) processes was in itself a breach of the FMFIA and a reportable
condition. Moreover, the fact that such a large circle of management
was aware of the non-compliance issue and did little to address it
calls into question the general state of the management environment
which permitted this to happen.''
In addition to establishing FPS as a premiere Federal law
enforcement agency and ensuring an increased number of officers to
complete the agency's important mission, H.R. 809 has several other
provisions vital to the future of the Service. It will clarify and
enhance the authority of FPS of ricers, to include the carrying of
firearms, petitioning Federal courts for arrest warrants, and executing
those warrants; and it will require that the Commissioner of FPS
establish minimum standards and training requirements in contracting
for security guards.
In the end Mr. Chairman, this is not a pay raise bill and I do not
know of any direct benefits which will accrue to FPS officers by its
passage. H.R. 809 is an officer safety issue, supported by law
enforcement professionals who take a great deal of pride in the work
they do and the agency they work for. We want a strong Federal
Protective Service. While we would agree that how you incorporate
facility protection and public safety into the design of Federal
buildings is a joint real estate--law enforcement function; the actual
delivery of the law enforcement service is an inherently governmental
function which requires direct oversight from law enforcement
professionals. Those of us who put our lives on the line every day to
ensure the safety and protection of Federal employees and facilities
believe that H.R. 809 is an important step toward improving the
capabilities of the Federal Protective Service to meet the security
challenges of the 21st Century. Passage of this legislation is a top
priority of the Fraternal Order of Police, and we hope to work with
members of this subcommittee to ensure its enactment before the end of
the 106th Congress.
Thank you again, Mr. Chairman, for allowing me the opportunity to
address you this morning. I would be happy to answer any questions
which you may have.
Fraternal Order of Police, Federal Protective Service,
New York, NY, October 11, 2000.
Gilbert G. Gallegos,
Fraternal Order of Police,
309 Massachusetts Avenue NE,
Washington, DC 20002.
Dear President Gallegos: In response to a request from Senator
Voinovich for more information on the Federal Protective Service Law
Enforcement Security Officer (LESO) program, I have compiled the
following information for your review.
The LESO position was create by the Public Building Service to
allow FPS officers the opportunity to be elevated to a position with
higher pay. Even though this was the stance of PBS, many Regions failed
to recruit FPS officers for the LESO positions and went directly to
college campuses and recruited people with no police experience.
PBS established the LESO position with the intent to incorporate
law enforcement and physical security. The result has been most LESO
positions are announced as Physical Security Specialist (LESO). LESO
personnel, despite guidelines from the Assistant Commissioner of FPS to
wear their uniforms while on duty, still report to work and perform
their duties in civilian attire.
PBS mandated that LESO's perform 51 percent law enforcement duties
and 49 percent physical security duties. The reality is that LESO's
rarely perform law enforcement duties and spend most of their time
conducting physical security surveys. Also, the LESO position was
supposed to augment the FPS uniform force of police officers. The fact
is that as LESO's are hired and sent to their duty stations, the FTE's
are not replaced, causing a reduction in uniformed personnel in major
One disturbing factor with the LESO program is that the LESO's, who
are supposed to be primarily law enforcement officers, do not report to
a law enforcement chain of command. Instead they report to a
supervisory physical security manager, thus further weakening any ties
between security and law enforcement. Another related, but sad fact is
that in many PBS Regions, the Regional FPS Directors are attempting to
have uniformed officers report to physical security specialists instead
of uniformed police supervisors.
LESO's were supposed to be deployed to areas that have a large
concentration of Federal employees and buildings, but out of the major
(core) metropolitan cities. The fact is that a majority of the LESO's
are being stationed in major metropolitan cities.
Finally, one of the questions that was asked at the Senate
Subcommittee hearing, was why more officers were not interested in the
LESO position. The answer to that question is that most of the police
officers believe that, since PBS has lied to them on a continuous and
recurring basis, they have lost the moral support of the officer rank
and file. This is one of the many reasons why we believe it is
necessary to separate FPS from PBS.
Steven S. Bellew, Vice-Chairman,
Fraternal Order of Police,
Federal Protective Service,
DC-1 Labor Committee.
Statement of Kenneth T. Lyons, President, International Brotherhood of
Mr. Chairman, members of the subcommittee, my name is Kenneth T.
Lyons, president of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers.
The International Brotherhood of Police Officers (IBPO) is the largest
police union in the AFL-CIO. On behalf of the entire membership of the
IBPO, I wish to thank you for allowing me to submit for the record a
statement regarding H.R. 809, the Federal Protective Service Reform
Act. My first point will be to reaffirm our commitment to provide
quality police and security service to the Federal community and the
general public. I only wish that I could be standing before you in
front of the Murrah Federal Building Memorial instead of this committee
room, so that my words would have more impact and drive home to all
that we must work together to ensure that the tragedy of Oklahoma and
the ones since, are not repeated.
The IBPO is proud of its members who work for the Federal
Protective Service (FPS). In addition to providing protection to
hundreds of thousands of Federal employees, these dedicated law
enforcement officials are literally on the front line when it comes to
safeguarding the more than 8,000 GSA-operated buildings. As you know
Federal Protective Service officers were the first to respond to the
World Trade Center bombing in New York City and were also active in the
investigations of the Oklahoma City bombing along with the Olympic
Centennial Park explosion. Mr. Chairman, terrorist threats toward the
Federal Government are real, and increasing. Our vocation has become
increasingly more violent and dangerous. We can only expect more
attempts of terrorism in Federal buildings that service the general
The IBPO wishes to thank Congressman Traficant for introducing H.R.
809. This legislation will finally recognize the Federal Protective
Officer (FPO) as a legitimate law enforcement professional. As
president of the IBPO, I can say without exception that an officer who
is highly motivated, properly trained and adequately compensated, must
be the first line of defense against crime and terrorism. It is the
police officer who has to approach the irate visitor or the upset and
often violent client, and it is the police officer whose life will
ultimately be on the line. Every day FPS police officers go that extra
mile in the pursuit of their duties and quite frankly they do it
because of personal motivation and dedication not for compensation
which is woefully inadequate when compared to other law enforcement
Congressman Traficant's legislation will address the many issues
facing security at our Federal buildings. H.R. 809 will increase the
number of full-time FPS officers from 673 to 730. While this number is
below what Congress mandated in 1998, which was repealed a few years
later, the increase will demonstrate to the public that threats to
Federal property and personnel are real. Regarding contracting out of
FPS officers, it should not surprise anyone on this subcommittee that
our organization has long opposed wasteful, costly and inappropriate
contracting out of inherently governmental functions. We once again
reiterate that the explosion in contracting out of services has cost
the American taxpayer millions of dollars, diminished government's
expertise in key areas, and reduces its ability to address the problems
of the future. Ill-trained, non-citizen contract guards with guns
should not be in a position of protecting government buildings.
GSA has pushed this concept too far, a reasonable amount of
civilian contract guards may be necessary, but to outnumber FPS police
officers by almost 20 to 1 is irrational as well as dangerous. If the
government continues the practice of contracting out of police officers
then these individuals should go through the same procedures and
standards that FPS officers go through. All of us know that security
guards are subject to the laws and regulations of the States in which
they are employed. Many States don't even require training for guards
equipped with weapons. Some State background checks are suspect at
best. To upgrade these private security guards, we support the
provision of H.R. 809 that prescribes standards for the contracting of
security personnel for buildings and areas that are owned or occupied
by the U.S. Government.
These standards shall ensure that contract employees receive
adequate training along with being subject to the same background check
requirements as Federal Protective Service officers. These individuals
are responsible for the safety and well-being of thousands of Americans
who work and do business in GSA-operated buildings across the country.
We owe it to our fellow citizens that professionals protect their
What concerns the IBPO is that the GSA never wanted a police force
and will go to great lengths to desolve the FPS. They are happy with
the ``counterfeit cops'' namely, civilian contract guards, who hoodwink
the general public, and government employees.
The IBPO believes that the GSA hasn't the desire, nor the will to
maintain a viable police force. While we strongly support the provision
of H.R. 809 that would allow Federal Protective Service to be a free-
standing service within the General Service Administration, we urge
Congress to contemplate transferring our officers to another agency
that has the know-how and savvy to administer police.
The IBPo also supports increasing pay for the Federal Protective
Service officer. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has
determined that FPS officers are police officers but they are not
considered ``law enforcement.'' With law enforcement status comes
better pay and retirement entitlements. Yet our officers are being
denied the same benefits that other uniformed Federal law enforcement
officers have. We face the same inherent dangers that other Federal law
enforcement do but are not recognized for our work and commitment to
the safety of our fellow citizens.
Mr. Chairman, thank you again for this opportunity to submit a
written statement on H.R. 809. The IBPO looks forward to working with
this subcommittee on the many issues facing FPS police officers. This
concludes my written statement.
Statement of Alfred Maldonado, Representative of the National
Federation of Federal Employees
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to submit this statement
on behalf of the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) in
support of H.R. 809, the Federal Protective Service Reform Act. This
bill, once signed into law, would drastically improve the Federal
Protective Service (FPS) by removing it as a division within the Public
Building Service (PBS) and making it a separate service of the General
Services Administration (GSA). In doing so, this legislation will
ensure that FPS is managed by law enforcement professionals and not PBS
administrators, who are untrained and inexperienced in the fields of
Law Enforcement and Physical Security. This legislation would also
expand the manpower and law enforcement authority of the FPS by
allowing FPS Police Officers the ability to investigate crimes against
GSA facilities and the people who frequent those facilities.
Additionally, H.R. 809 would improve the quality of contract security
guards who serve as the eyes and ears of the FPS by mandating training
requirements of these guards across the Nation.
As you are well aware, and in these proceedings are often reminded,
168 men; women, and children lost their lives on April 19, 1995 in the
Murrah Building in Oklahoma City. Indeed because of mismanagement; FPS
left this building a very soft target for domestic terrorists Timothy
McVeigh and Terry Nichols by significantly reducing it's FPO force and
by assigning only one contract security guard to patrol the three
buildings in that area. We cannot allow such a tragedy to occur again.
H.R. 809 is a heroic piece of legislation, aimed at stopping domestic
terrorism from touching our Federal facilities and the men, women, and
children who frequent them.
NFFE's position on this bill can best be illustrated by first
pointing out the problems in the current way PBS and FPS operates. I
will use the San Diego area, which happens to be my area of
responsibility; as an example. Please allow me to begin by telling you
a little about what I do for a living.
The San Diego FPS Office serves all of San Diego, Imperial and Yuma
Counties, and parts of Riverside County. There are three Federal
Protective Officers (FPS Police Officers) who patrol from San Diego,
California to Yuma, Arizona; and up to Palm Springs, California; over
17,000 square miles. Unfortunately, due to the lack of manpower we are
just unable to serve the Arizona area, except in rare situations. Of
the facilities we patrol, six of them are U.S. Border Stations. One of
those, the San Ysidro Border Station, which separates Tijuana, Mexico
from San Diego, California, is considered the busiest land port of
entry in the world. It is estimated that 43,000 automobiles and 73,000
pedestrians pass through the port on an average day. Though the FPS
maintains a contract guard force on the site, it does little to curb
the number of criminal incidents in and around this large GSA facility.
The San Diego Police Department has adopted a general ``hands-off''
policy at this facility, due to the jurisdiction and physical control
issues, insisting that the U.S. Government police it's own property.
Thus, FPS is primarily responsible for policing this facility.
On any given Friday and Saturday night, 9,000 to 10,000 pedestrians
across the border into Tijuana to drink and engage in the Tijuana
night-life. Most, if not all of them are not legally able to drink in
the United States. Usually about 6,000 to 8,000 of them return under
the influence of alcohol or drugs, or extremely intoxicated. Many of
the people are in violation of Federal and State public intoxication
statutes: Assaults, robberies and sex offenses in and around this GSA
facility are very common. Shootings and stabbings are not uncommon.
Often, U.S. Government employees such as INS and U.S. Customs
personnel-are assaulted or have threats made against their lives.
Generally, I work the weekend nights alone or with another officer. I
spend the remainder of my week catching up an the vast stacks of
paperwork from my weekend nights.
As you can imagine, of an international border crossing of this
size, in such close proximity to major cities, there are a large number
of fugitives crossing to and from Mexico on a regular basis. Due to the
hard work and extra effort of both FPS Police Officers and Immigration
and Naturalization Service (INS) inspectors at the San Ysidro port of
entry we have apprehended over 500 felony fugitives. These fugitives
have been wanted by Federal and State law enforcement agencies from
across the country for crimes such as murder, arson, child molesting,
robbery and drug trafficking. We have arrested members and associates
of the Mexican and Russian Mafias, and international drug cartels.
Until 3 years ago FPS presence was vacant from the San Diego area for
approximately 13 years due to budget cutbacks and poor staffing
decisions within PBS. Sadly enough, before the re-establishment of FPS
Police Officers in the San Diego area, many of these dangerous
fugitives were just set free from INS or Customs custody because they
were either not identified as fugitives or San Diego Police officers
were not available to respond. Although this fugitive apprehension
effort takes up a large portion of our time and resources, we consider
it one of our primary responsibilities. In turn, we have the
satisfaction of knowing that many dangerous felons have been taken off
the streets and the citizens of the United States are much safer
because of our efforts. It is also important to remember that we are
doing this with only three FPS Police Officers. If we had more officers
and resources, this program could be expanded and undoubtedly net many
Overall, we are responsible for roughly 160 separate facilities. We
do our best to locate new GSA buildings or document vacant GSA
buildings as we patrol this large area. However, it's not uncommon for
us to receive a call for service for a facility that we have never been
to, and didn't know existed. This problem of identifying our properties
exists because PBS does not communicate adequately with FPS. Keep in
mind that the Government Agencies in these buildings pay for FPS
service by the square foot regardless of whether they are receiving it
or not. So why are GSA facilities receiving little to no FPS service?
There are two simple answers to that question: (1) Because there is
very little communication between PBS and FPS, and (2) there is no
accountability for PBS and FPS management officials to do so in the
first place. In other words, even if PBS were asked to work with FPS,
there are no centralized mechanisms in place to ensure this will
happen. So where is my proof that this is happening? I work that proof
daily in the San Diego area with two other brave souls, who literally
put their lives on the line in what is considered the toughest
assignment in FPS. In the San Diego office we make mare arrests and
have more violent crimes and thefts occurring than any other region
within FPS. Unfortunately, because PBS and FPS does not communicate
properly or because both lack any sense of accountability, there are
still only three FPS Police Officers working in the San Diego region.
PBS and FPS have been aware of this problem for several years now,
despite the fact persons on GSA property in the San Diego area have
been violently attacked and robbed, despite the fact that marry
Government employees and persons who visit GSA facilities in San Diego
have been viciously assaulted, despite the fact that an FPS Police
Officer was almost killed in the line of duty.
These are not just manpower issues These are examples of inadequate
or incompetent management decisions within FPS or the inability of the
PBS to efficiently manage FPS. Currently, there are no requirements for
FPS supervisors or administrators to have any security or law
enforcement experience in order to be appointed. In some regions, FPS
administrators have been appointed without training or experience in
security or law enforcement. Thus, FPS has been weakened. because of
such poor appointment practices.
H.R. 809 would change this. and require that all FPS Administrators
be qualified to oversee such an important mission as the safety and
security of GSA buildings and the people they house. It would require
that the administrators have a minimum of 5 years of experience in a
law enforcement command position. This would ensure that FPS operates,
as it should, as a professional Federal law enforcement and security
agency. H.R. 809 would require that the FPS maintain a minimum of 730
FPS Police Officers nationwide. Though this number is still far too few
to adequately patrol and protect the vast number of GSA buildings in
the United States, it is significantly more than the 500 FPS Police
Officers left in the FPS in 1995.
Since the tragic bombing in 1995, the FPS has done much to upgrade
physical security procedures, but little to upgrade its law enforcement
capacity. In fact, FPS law enforcement abilities are currently
inadequate. Recently, the role of the FPS Criminal Investigator changed
from that of criminal investigation to one primarily of criminal
intelligence gathering. Though this indeed is an important function,
PBS and FPS administrators have done nothing to fill the gap in
criminal investigations left by this change.
Currently only FPS Criminal Investigations are authorized to follow
investigations off GSA-controlled property. FPS Police Officers are
only authorized to enforce laws and investigate crimes on GSA
facilities. This means that when an investigation leads an FPS Police
Officer off GSA property, the investigation ends there. Because of the
new role of the criminal investigator, they often do not have time to
carry these investigations further. Additionally, PBS has stressed for
FPS to rely heavily on local law enforcement agencies to police these
facilities. Neither PBS nor FPS are willing compensate these local law
enforcement agencies to do this. Oftentimes, local law enforcement is
already taxed with a heavy burden outside of GSA facilities. These
often overworked local agencies have expressed reluctance to provide
service to Federal facilities which are supposed to be policed by the
For example, earlier year, an employee of the Veterans
Administration had her purse stolen at a GSA-controlled VA Outpatient
Clinic in San Diego. An FPS Police officer responded to her call
promptly, and conducted his investigation but was unable to catch the
culprit. The necessary reports were processed and the officer did as
much as he could legally do. Several months later, the theft victim
contacted the FPS again with a frantic plea for help. It turned out
that she had not canceled the checks stolen with her purse, and they
were being forged and used in various businesses in the San Diego area
for thousands of dollars, She contacted the San Diego and El Cajon
Police Departments, but found they were not concerned about the
incident as it stemmed from a theft which occurred in a Federal
facility, and which was investigated by the FPS. Unfortunately, the FPS
Police were not authorized, nor empowered to continue the
investigation, as the subsequent crimes occurred off of GSA property,
although the string of forged cheeks would have bean a tremendous help
to identify the purse thief. What began as a petty $150 theft evolved
into a $3,000 felony, and it went partially investigated and unsolved.
Essentially, this U.S. Government employee, a victim of a crime, was
left unassisted as she pleaded with her bank to forgo the debts
incurred by the thief.
H.R. 809 would increase the authority of FPS Police Officers,
allowing them to continue such investigations leading off GSA property,
to investigate these crimes fully, and pursue these criminal predators
until they are caught.
The recent introduction of the law Enforcement Security Officer
position by the Public Building Service into the Federal Protective
Service has been billed by Mr. Peck and Mr. Edwards as the new ``core''
position in FPS. The ``LESO'' is supposed to be a ``jack of all
trades'' in physical security and law enforcement. The target pay grade
of the FPS Police Officer is GS-07. The target pay grade of the LESO is
GS-11, as is the target pay grade of the Physical Security Specialist.
Law Enforcement Security Officers carry guns and have arrest authority,
as do properly trained Physical Security Specialists. At the target
level the Law Enforcement Security Officers' duties will lean more
toward physical security in plain cloths than uniformed law
enforcement. The LESO series is a GS-080, which is the same as the
Physical Security Specialist. Do we see a trend here? It seems as if
PBS has essentially tempted FPS Police Officers with little more than
money to desert the law enforcement field to become Physical Security
Specialists. Ideally, PBS would like the entire FPS to be comprised
entirely of these Law Enforcement Security Officers, all of whom could
be contracted out, as the functions of a GS-080 physical security
specialist are not inherently governmental. The NFFE strongly opposes
this program, and this practice. This program is a ploy to get the PBS
real estate managers out of the practice of managing law enforcement,
because they know they are not qualified to do so.
Recently, FPS has adopted a ``new'' philosophy they term ``customer
oriented policing.'' The ideal goal of this philosophy is that it gets
FPS Police Officers more in touch with the tenants in the buildings, to
deter crime rather than to be strictly reactive. There are 582 FPS
Police Officers and Law Enforcement Security Specialists nationwide. If
we average that by State, that would be less than 11 per State, but
that wouldn't be accurate at all, because almost half of those officers
are stationed in Washington DC. This might leave an average closer to
6, or maybe 5 per State. Some fairly large States such as Nevada, New
Mexico and Arizona have no FPS Police Officers or Law Enforcement
Security Officers stationed anywhere in the State, but tenant Agencies
in GSA buildings in these States pay for FPS service by the square
foot. How how does it seem realistic that FPS Police Officers can deter
crime by proactively patrolling GSA facilities? It is not possible.
This-program is little more than a farce, or even a lie by the PBS to
create the illusion of proactive law enforcement concerns.
H.R. 809 is a good piece of legislation. It is a heroic piece of
legislation. It will serve only to strengthen the Federal Protective
Service whose primary responsibility is the safety and protection of
Federal facilities and the people who work in and visit them.