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tv   Oversight Hearing Examines Military- Civilian Transfer of Excess Equipment  CSPAN  July 30, 2017 2:43am-3:41am EDT

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members killed. was a fact that the city was taken but he continued to deny it while the battle was being fought. as a consequence, you could never conceive the share number forces in the so small units of marines and troopers were being ordered to attack positions that were held by overwhelmingly superior enemy positions.ntrenched announcer: sunday night on c-span's q&a. pentagon'sook at the 1030 three program created in the 90's to allow state and local law agencies to purchase excess military equipment at a reduced cost. this subcommittee hearing theudes officials from government accountability office which issued a report suggesting
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the defense department have stricter requirements for the program. this is just under one hour. [indiscernible conversation] [gavel pound] mr. wilson: good morning. the hearing will come to order. ladies and gentlemen, i welcome you here today and call the hearing of the house armed services subcommittee of readiness -- of the house armed services subcommittee on the continued oversight of the transfer of excess poetry equipment to civilian law enforcement agencies to order.
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i would like to begin by recognizing the dedicated service of our clerk. this will be her last official event for our subcommittee and i want to personally thank her for her contributions to our efforts in the past year. we wish her the best of luck as she moves forward with future endeavors. thank you, jody. [applause] mr. wilson: one of the objectives of the subcommittee is to bring attention to matters that impact the overall readiness of the department of defense, that includes management challenges and budget implications that could be handled more efficiently. we want to ensure our armed forces achieve the highest levels of readiness possible.
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given the current threats facing our nation and the budgetary pressure placed on the department of defense, accountability is paramount and every dollar counts. oversight can make sure mistakes don't happen, and when they inevitably do, we learn lessons from missteps. for this reason, i'm very grateful we have convened this hearing today on the recent government accountability office cao report highlighting deficiencies found with diminishment of the law enforcement support office leso within the defense logistics agency. leso has been responsible for the 1033 program, which has provided valuable resources to federal, state and local law enforcement agencies since 1991. these necessary items have contributed to law enforcement ability to conduct counterterrorism, counter narcotics and border security missions throughout the united states and in short, items are repaid by the taxpayer are
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continuing to serve the citizens of united states. it was stated the program inappropriately assigned more than 100 controlled items with an estimated value of $1.2 million. this reveals efficiencies in the process in the approval of law enforcement agency applications and the transfer of control property. the program must improve its monitoring, management and administration of this critical and important program. i read the gao recommendations carefully and applaud dla for taking a proactive approach to addressing the shortfalls and immediately acknowledging, amazingly enough, immediately
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acknowledging, the problems identified. i look forward to hearing what progress the dla has made in continuing to remedy these various deficiencies, but our oversight tends to ensure taxpayer dollars are used responsibly, security is maintained for sensitive items and accountability of equipment is never taken for granted. our panel will address the findings and recommendations of the report as well as the actions taken by dla to correct identified deficiencies. i now turn to our valued ranking colleague from guam for her introductory comments. del. bordallo: thank you, mr. chairman, for calling this important hearing on the recent gao report on the dod excess property program also known as the 1033 program. thank you also to our four witnesses for being here today for what i expect to be an
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insightful discussion. let me begin that i understand the value of the 1033 program. it allows law enforcement agencies to fill critical equipment shortfalls at little to no additional cost to the taxpayer, leveraging excessive dod property. now, many of these items are noncontrolled, can be purchased at any office supply or furniture store and help alleviate budgetary stress, particular on local agencies, but this can also be controlled property, items that are sensitive in nature and cannot be released to the general public, such as firearms and military grade imagery technologies. that is what makes the gao report particular concern. not only does it highlight the negligence with which dla treated property procured with taxpayer dollars but it demonstrated a dangerous
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vulnerability that could compromise the safety of the american people. i am particularly appreciative that gao conducted this operation and delivered this report, because it brings to light these older abilities and allows us to conduct critical oversight on the handling of equipment to ensure reforms are in place to better secure the transfer program. i am deeply disturbed, however, by the prospect that a malicious individual or organization could procure dod property, especially controlled items. understanding this is likely the result of a combination of issues, including inadequate protocols and safeguards, insufficient training and potential cultural errors, i expect to dig down on how this program to be reformed. i do look forward to the discussion this morning and hope we can come away with clear objectives and steps forward to ensure the program has the
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proper safeguards and accountability in place. mr. chairman, i thank you again for holding this important meeting and i yield back. mr. wilson: thank you. we are pleased to recognize our witnesses today and thank them for taking the time to be with us. we have the director of defense capabilities in management of the government accountability office. the director of forensic audits and investigative services of government accountability office. the deputy director of logistics operations of the defense logistics agency. and the director of the defense logistics agency dispositions services. we will begin with statements from each agency and begin with the government accountability office. ms. merritt: chairman, ranking
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member and members of the subcommittee, they given the opportunity to be here today with my colleague. our testimony today summarizes key findings from our july 2017 report on dod access control -- excess control property and addresses how federal, state and local enforcement agencies reported using and benefiting from the property, and the way in which the dla has taken actions to enhance processes, including internal controls related to the transfer of such property. dod has no authority to transfer -- dod has the authority to
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transfer excess property to local authorities. dla administers the law enforcement support program for dod. for calendar years 2013 through 2015, dod has reported transferring approximately $1.1 billion of excess control poverty to law enforcement agencies. control property typically involves sensitive acquitted and items that cannot be released to the public such as detonation robots, small arms and ambush protected vehicles. law enforcement officials we surveyed and interviewed cited a number of ways in which they have benefited from the program, with several reporting the transfer of control property allows them to save money. the reported uses include enhancing counter drug and counterterrorism activity, search and rescue, natural disaster response and police training. dla has taken action to enhance processes for the program and responded to pass --him rr --
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responded to past recommendations. has taken steps to address previously identified weaknesses in its processes and procedures, mostly at state and local levels. in our july report, we note that witnesses at the federal area in three levels, verifying and approving applications, transporting property, and assessment of risk. creating a fictitious federal agency, we gained access to the program and obtained -- worth $1.2 million. this includes simulated pipe bombs. n himight goggles. -him- himnight
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-- specific weaknesses highlighted in our report include internal controls for verifying approving federal agency applications and enrollment in programs were not adequate. specifically, and left the reliance on electronic communications without verifications so they cannot properly vet applicants. second, we identified deficiencies in the transfer of him control properties, such as personnel not routinely verifying identification of individuals picking up property. third, while dla has taken some steps to identify these deficiencies in the program, they lack a conference a framework for instituting for fraud prevention and mitigation measures at all stages of the process. dla officials acknowledge a have not conducted a fraud risk assessment. overall, we concluded dla's current controls do not provide reasonable assurance in preventing fraud. therefore, we made four recommendations to dla. one, review and revise policy or procedures for verifying and approving applicants.
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two, ensure dispensation services, verify that persons picking up items have valid credentials. three, verify the quantities and types of items picked up beforehand. lastly, conduct a fraud risk assessment with a strategy for specific control strategies to mitigate, assess, and prevent fraud. dod concurred with our recommendations and highlighted actions to address each one. chairman, members of the subcommittee, that concludes my prepared statement. my colleague and i would be happy and pleased to respond to any questions you may have. mr. wilson: thank you very much. indeed, your professionalism is very impressive.
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mr. mcelrath, would you like to make a presentation? we proceed to mr. scott. mr. scott: mr. chairman, subcommittee numbers, thank you for allowing me to be here today to discuss the execution of the 1033 program, also known as the law enforcement support office program or leso program. i am deputy director, dla logistics operations. with me is mr. mike cannon, the director of dispensation services for dla. we appreciate the opportunity to discuss the report on excess property and advise you of the actions we have taken to further strengthen our process. dla disposition services is responsible for the final disposition of excess property received from military services. dla disposition services also administers and executes the 1033 programs.
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about 7500 federal, state and local law enforcement across the 50 states and u.s. territories actively participate in the program. 30 federal agency headquarters are currently enrolled. these are the higher headquarters to the 345 federal law enforcement activities participating in the program. dla has worked extensively over the last several years to improve the state and local side of the program, which is 96% of total participation. reviewhe gao's recent did validate it recent enhancements in the state and local program, it also highlighted on her abilities in the federal program. dla takes the findings very seriously and is actively addressing and correcting the deficiencies. in september, 2015, dla began a focused improvement effort to strengthen our federal program. we have included robust controls in our federal program, which already exist in our state program. specifically, we have revised
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our procedures for verifying and approving federal agency applications for enrollment. first, dla now requires an executive level representative in the federal agency designate a point of contact in writing. this poc will validate and indoors always enrollment applications and all the equipment requests for field activities. second, dla now requires the poc design a memorandum of understanding outlining and accepting the responsibilities or management of their program. we have sent all of our 30 agencies, and 12 authority returned it. third, dla will visit headquarters and meet with poc to confirm eligibility good as of today, we have visited 22 federal headquarters. additionally, dla has strengthened the internal approval process for enrolling federal agencies. first, we have designated a federal liaison to manage the application process. second, dla will utilize the fbi's national crime information center database to verify the
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legitimacy of all organizations. second, dla will utilize the fbi's national crime information center database to verify the legitimacy of all organizations. finally, the program manager is now required to approve all federal applications as a second internal review. in regards to the gao findings, we have taken the following actions. first, we immediately conducted remedial training at sites. second, we mandated enforcement training at all of our disposition sites, and we are 50% complete and are on track to finish two months ahead of schedule.
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third, we added this topic as an emphasis item to our existing compliance program, which includes no notice spot inspections and a dla headquarters management review. in response to the gao -- fraud risk assessment, dla headquarters specifically, our inspector general office and my logistics directorate will lead the effort with participation by disposition services. dla has made significant enhancements to improve its internal controls in the 1033 program. we remain committed to continuous process improvement to ensure we provide the best possible support to law enforcement agencies and their critical mission. chairman wilson, ranking member,
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and members of the committee, we thank you for the opportunity to discuss this important issue here today and are prepared to answer any questions you have. mr. wilson: mr. cannon? mr. cannon: mr. scott spoke on have of agency. mr. wilson: it is amazing that an agency acknowledged that an error occurred and is taking a positive response. i am grateful today that we have really talented members of the subcommittee here, people who are dedicated to the american people. so many of them are here that we are going to strictly follow the five-minute rule. we have the talented drew warren. we will proceed right away. how did you determine the specific vulnerabilities you assessed the led to the decision, how did you determine that? we appreciate you being proactive. ms. merritt: while we were
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conducting out fieldwork in some of the states, we reviewed some of the names of the applicants, and as we reviewed the names of applicants, we noticed one applicant that had a title that it not seem to be a legitimate agency. while doing that, we questioned dla and they acknowledged that was an entity in which they had been investigating and continue to investigate. that was one of the key triggers for this, as well as we have made a number of recommendations over the years to tighten controls and we wanted to ensure that some of these recommendations were properly implemented. my colleagues probably will have a little bit to add to that response. >> based on the information we received from our capabilities team, we formulated a plan to create a fictitious law enforcement entity and created an online presence.
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after that, we submitted an application to dla for approval. we went through their online enrollment process and actually went on through their online ordering process to request goods. mr. wilson: that is amazing. we all appreciate you being proactive. additionally, how does this compare to what you initially found the beginning of your investigation last year in 2016? ms. merritt: we briefed dla continuously on the progress of our works, including the inspector general's office. in may, we had a formal meeting with them where we fully disclosed our findings to them. at that point in time, they told us about some respective actions they have started relating to the application. for example, they have modified
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application. as a review continued, they also have begun developing memorandums of understanding at that time. in short, a number of actions were already commencing. as we continue and get closer to the end, and they realize we had in fact posed as a fictitious organization and obtained items, they also noted that there were additional actions they were going to take in order to close those particular caps in their process. mr. wilson: thank you. for mr. scott, your service for the security of american families is very important with the 1033 program. what is the process for law enforcement agencies to obtain controlled items, what additional steps in the authorization process has been considered in light of the investigation? mr. scott: our process previous to finding out what they were
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able to accomplish required that mr. cannon's organization work directly with law enforcement agencies. there was an evocation that had to be filed, they have to provide a statute of authority, senior agents in charge had to find those applications to be able to get into the program. as you have heard, our controls were not adequate. we recognize that. we started our efforts to improve the federal program prior to the gao starting their effort and i will say, immediately, i think the first meetings we had with them were in march of 2017 when we learned what they were able to do in their investigation. by april 3, we had implemented those additional things you have heard about. those include, now that we get an executive level sponsorship from the federal agency.
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we have a poc identified going forward, we visit the organizations to validate. we will now use the fbi database to ensure the organization is correctly loaded there and is legitimate. those are all things we have added and we believe those processes will prevent this from happening in the future, mr. chairman. mr. wilson: and those are very responsible safeguards. i believe there are three, is there still one pending to be active on? >> mr. scott mentioned that they are scheduling to do the fraud risk assessment. mr. wilson: thank you very much. councilwoman. del. bordallo: the gao recommendations included strengthening internal rituals and reviewing protocols. given what we know now, what is your level of confidence that such a violation will not happen again, and secondly recognizing
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the only 4% to 7% of transfers are controlled should the program be suspended until the problems are fixed. you have stated that changes have been made, but we would not be here if there was not so a problem. will it happen again or should we suspend the program mental changes have been made? >> first of all, the control measures we have in place, i am confident will preclude this from happening again. as mr. scott alluded to, we require very similar to the tight controls we had at the state and local procedures, a federal executive appointment of their poc, a face-to-face visit to inch what are complaining, and as a backup, the ncic database check. with those controls in place, i am confident this will not happen again.
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del. bordallo: all right, second part of my question? mr. cannon: in march when we discussed this with the gao, i immediately suspended the release of all property to federal agencies into we could put these controls in place. those controls included a memorandum of understanding, which we had begun developing a year ago. that memorandum of understanding was finalized by dla in summer of choice 16, and until the agencies complete the new requirements, i do not release additional property. del. bordallo: you don't think the program should be suspended? that is what you are saying? mr. cannon, dod responded i saying, dla has a policy requiring on-site officials to
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request and verify identification from all customers. what, if any, disciplinary actions have been taken against the individuals and the supervisors responsible for oversight and training who approved the fictitious application for enrollment in the law enforcement support office program, approved the request to property or conduct of the transfer of property without following proper procedures? how is dla determining who is responsible? mr. cannon: we are looking at our records to determine the type of property released and where it was released so we can determine as best we can the individual or individuals responsible. prior to that, as soon as we identified the locations that the property came from, we conducted remedial training for every person on that site, or the control measures we had a
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place that were not followed. we have also added additional emphasis on our controls when we do our semiannual self inspection, when we do our biannual compliance reviews, when i do my no notice site visits and the headquarters come down to do their visits, as well. anytime an individual is found whose either behavior or performance is not standard, we take appropriate actions depending on the circumstance. del. bordallo: what kind of disciplinary action would you take? are you releasing the people? changing their positions or what? mr. cannon: i have a range of actions i can take depending on the circumstances and condition. i have taken actions for infractions everywhere from a letter of counseling to dismissal. the range is open depending on the situation, ma'am. del. bordallo: one quick question.
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ms. merritt, while the majority of your report focused on the application approval and transfer of property, you can you provide insight into what you observed with respect to accountability and tracking of control property both at the disposition sites as well as once transferred to a federal, state and local law enforcement agency? i don't have much time left. ms. merritt: at the federal level, we observed one case in which one federal organization was not aware of how much property had been transferred to that agency or to its respective activities in the field. that was quickly remedied when they contacted them, they were able to obtain a list and halt any approval at that time. local and state sites, that went pretty well because they have a state coordinator. unlike the federal level, there were more checks and balances. >> i yield back. >> we now proceed to austin scott.
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>> you said that you recognize the problem prior to the examination. >> correct. >> lane did you recognize the problem? >> we started our efforts in september 2015. we brought in federal agencies for more training to ensure they knew how to work with the program. that led to the development of the memorandum of understanding. when we heard the investigative what had happened as you heard we quickly moved to implement procedures. >> you said -- when did you recognize you had a problem? >> we recognize that the control measures in place for the
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federal agencies were not as robust for the state agencies as we discussed. >> you recognize the problem in 2015. you did not expedite those actions until the report. >> correct. >> most of the items are not legal items. what have the control is been different if they had been firearms? >> we have additional application process in place for items such as weapons and armored vehicles. >> the difference in the threshold, is it based on the cost of the item? what leads to the additional measures?
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>> when we did our risk analysis, we determined in conjunction that extra controls were in place. we have always had been in place for aircraft. >> it is based on the type of equipment and the potential use. >> so it would be potentially somebody used something the fake to obtain something from the government and then turn around and sell it on ebay or something along those lines. do we have any idea what happened?
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>> the items? >> the ones that occurred prior to you recognizing that something happened for you to recognize that you had a problem that items go to. misrepresentation? >> as we looked it over control measures we noticed they were not as stringent as the control measures for this state and local programs so our efforts were to make the programs more similar in levels of control. >> so but you do not believe that anybody misrepresented something to obtain something for free or at a discount and then turn around and sell it for a profit. >> i have no knowledge of that happening. >> to we know where the items are? >> we know where all of the items are.
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>> that pretty much answers the questions that i had. i am happy that we know where the items are and i appreciate the additional measures being put in place. it is an important program. a lot of discussions revolve around larger equipment. i know a sheriff deputy very well that stepped out of the bearcat. buckshot hit the window and had he been in a normal car he wouldn't be with us today so i hope that we continue this program. >> thank you very much. we are grateful to precede to anthony brown of maryland. >> i appreciate that you and the ranking member have convened and to look into this important issue.
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my question really goes to a little bit of a broader look at the program in response to protests in ferguson. following the killing of michael brown president obama created a dod and justice department group to ensure oversight according to the constitution. that is not met since january of this year under the new administration. president trump intends to rescind the previous executive order that insured training for a equipment acquisition and that is of concern to me. i am concerned that the transfer of armored vehicles and firearms as well as other controlled items makes our police stations look more like for an operating basis.
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it would unsettle me to see armored vehicles patrolling the seats of cash streets of anne arundel county. does the agency take into account the actual or potential threat that a community faces prior to delivering these military style equipment? >> congressman, we actively support that working group. our vice director is over lead on that group. that group looks very closely at the categorization of items in which things would be prohibited. they completed another look at that going into this fiscal year and we take that very seriously.
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we applied the decisions made from that working group on what is allowed for us to execute. that group when they made those determinations, they brought in a number of different folks to have those discussions that included experts on the use of those types of weapons and civil liberties leaders and law enforcement leaders -- >> if i can jump in. can this small city of seat pleasant with 12,000 residents acquire the same equipment that the city of baltimore can obtain or do you do some sort of risk assessment, potential threat training, capabilities? >> all requirements have to pass through a state coordinator. they review it also against the
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sides of that force and a number of items that they are allowed to have. the training for the items is that goes back on the law enforcement community. >> to you require the training? >> we require it. >> i just have a little bit of -- what efforts -- if any? -- is the delay taking to work not only with local law enforcement but also alongside community members. you mentioned community members through the transfer process. >> a lot of the requirements that we have levied on the program for the state and local agencies is that before they receive property from us they must be approved by their governing body so whether that is the state or county but whoever oversees that body must
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approve not only their participation in the program but there which all of property -- >> so like the city council? >> correct, if they are in the program -- >> right. one final thought follow-up. are there any restrictions on transferring equipment under the program when the local law enforcement agency is under investigation by the doj for any violation? and is that addressed in consent orders that they handful that are currently in place? >> we coordinate with the department of justice and anytime they have concerns, we restrict the transfer of property to that department until they tell us otherwise. >> it is not -- you evaluate whether it on to to be restricted? >> doj evaluates and then advise as to restrict. >> thank you.
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>> thank you. we now proceed to congresswoman vicky hartzler of missouri. >> i appreciate the work from the dla and addressing this. please discuss the process for law enforcement agency to obtain controlled items. what other steps and authorization process for obtaining these items are being considered? >> the process that we have in place for our states and local as it is a similar process we have already implemented for the federal government that anybody somebody wants to withdraw it property that has to go through the state or federal coordinator to improve that they need it. we also have apportionment rules. we give preference to counter
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drug counterterrorism and border patrol responsibilities but for things like -- we also look at the local ability for law enforcement agencies that provide mutual support and if there is mutual support available from another close by law enforcement agency we will not apportion them for example a -- so we will not give the county and the city both a -- if they are in the same location. for weapons we authorize one per paid and for vehicles it is typically one vehicle on armored like a humvee for every three officers. >> given the da joe created fictitious law enforcement gao created fictitious law enforcement agency that was approved -- -- to ensure each enrollment is verified as being legitimate and is eligible law enforcement agency and how long will this process take and what impact will it have on approving new applications? >> for the federal side of the program as we discussed earlier
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on of those are suspended until they come forward and comply with our new procedures with the ammo you, our visit, and our confirming their identities and the fbi database. we think those requirements are both sounded to ensure integrity to the program and then there are also reasonable on the state side of the program, we also intend to be proactive and go back and retroactively look at every single one of those organizations against the database as well to ensure that we do not have anything else there. >> great and the dao rp at mentions an annual training conference for state coordinators and representative brown talked about the training at the state coordinators take
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this training -- within the state -- if this training is provided wireline enforcement agencies reporting the need for more training on at iso program policy is and why did you feel the need to develop an online training tool -- why does this training very within the state? >> so we do an annual conference -- it is actually next month. we trained and advised the state coordinators on the policy and in the state coordinators are responsible to train -- their some states do that better than others. we have developed online trading to assist. we offer over the phone or skype training. we also have job aids which are checklists to help them do the step-by-step. we go to every state to review their program. we provide training as required as requested while we happened to be there visiting.
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>> will online training replace training? is it either/or? >> it is to supplement. >> we are also going to take when we conduct the fraud risk assessment. we are going to make that part of what we look at. >> thank you very much. it sounds like you are taking very proactive steps and we appreciate you doing that. >> thank you very much. we now proceed to congresswoman carol porter of new hampshire. >> i am deeply concerned about this but i am puzzled because it seems that there is more more red tape to open a doughnut shop then there is to get this
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equipment or that it was -- and i am puzzled as to how the rules and regulations could have been so loose that they were able to create a fictitious agency to receive material so can you please walk me back to the beginning -- who drafted these regulations that allowed -- because as i listen to you dow and you say and -- you know -- that now you have identified the point of contact and you have all the steps here -- but common sense says they should have been there at the beginning -- and so i would like you to walk me that to the very beginning -- who drafted this -- obviously, with so many holes in it that it was possible to do this and who knows who else -- and i also would like to see that the people who drafted this clearly are not confident enough to handle this work and so i am not comfortable with the answer of -- well, we are going to go back and we have several possibilities -- this is a question of competence.
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this is a serious job and they failed the people of this country and so i would appreciate your comments on that. >> the program management was transferred to defense logistics agency's disposition services in very late 2008 through and we completed the transfer in 2009 and we are following procedures from their goods or procedures that we had in place of hiring the completion of a thorough application to have a regional special agent in charge required a signed application and have the statute of authority was identified as being insufficient by the gao and we have since made improvements. the application wasn't immediately approved. there was some back-and-forth between my staff and it took several months before the
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application was improved but it was the fact -- we have tightened up those procedures. >> and i will that i think. we view it just as seriously. the other things that have been reviewed and again our view of those controls was that working directly with us federal organizations and the things he went through that we did have the controls in place that clearly is not the case. but the program is also been reviewed by other external folks as well. they had been previous reports. we have had an independent review of the program by the corporation. it doesn't make it any better but the external reviews also did not identify these deficiencies -- now that we know them, we are all over it to make sure it never happens again. >> i appreciate your honesty and your comment but is still doesn't cover the basic problem. i read something about how they are going to have to show an
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identification. so can you tell me what was meant by that that they didn't have to show an identification? >> when somebody comes to a disposition services site to pick up property they are not -- everyone is required to present identification and follow signing procedures and we have always had is measures in place. in this case those measures were not adequately followed so what i have done since then is i immediately at the three locations because i don't know the specifics because the report didn't identify them but we are able to figure out the locations they went to. we immediately contacted remedial training to ensure they were following the protocols that are already in place and then we started i have actually brought my field bidders to battle creek michigan to my leaders tomy field
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battle creek, michigan to my headquarters to talk to them about this face-to-face in the first second week of july and gave them 30 days to train every single individual -- every single employee and disposition services are following the proper procedures for identification of personnel and counting count and quality -- [indiscernible] we have about 50% of our sites complete and we will be complete. emphasizing the need to follow the established procedures. >> and i appreciate that but again these are not toys and these were rules and regulations that were violated and could have wound up in a very serious outcome. and so i think just speaking to them is not enough. they had a responsibility to follow this protocol which was weak enough as it was and so i am still want to know what happened the size you guys shouldn't have done that? >> so the moment mr. cannon is able to identify who those individuals are our agency and his organization have a precedent and are prepared to take the appropriate administrative disciplinary
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action and that can be anything from suspensions without pay to removal from the position. >> thank you and i yield back. >> thank you. we appreciate your service and we now proceed to congressman donald mceachin of richmond. >> thank you. many of my questions have been touched on so i am going to ask one. when you all this does is controlled properties such as dispose ofu all controlled properties such as the items that we have been talking about, and let's assume that you are going to local law enforcement requested it -- do you take into consideration what is going on in that area at the time for instance if there are tensions between the local citizens and the police department or anything like that or do you just sort of just dispose of the property in accordance with whatever guidelines you have in place? >> if we have a request from law enforcement agencies that
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request for property has to be first approved by the local governing body so the state city council. then that has to go to a state coordinator who has to approve the request and then when that request comes to us we will issue property if the property is available. if property is not issued to the department of defense who has first priority into a special [indiscernible] and it is controlled property then that is destroyed. >> let me follow up on that and ask a question may a slightly different way assuming that it has been approved by the governing body then submitted to you by the state liaison are there any circumstances in which you say no you know city of richmond you are just not going to get this property for whatever reason? >> we have priority of property to counter drug border
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protection text -- so if there is multiple requests that will determine which gets it but we also if the fbi tells us that they have concerns and advises us then we do not issue to that. >> the other thing congressman is we also have allocation limits, too. so that in terms of the quantity of those types of items that they can have that we look at the size of an organization -- that is another thing that can limit how much of these controlled items that unit can get. >> thank you. i yield back. >> thank you very much. we now have a final question. >> we have heard that dla described the actions that they have taken and that they believe they have taken appropriate actions to fix the problem. my question to you is how would you assess the actions both in
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response to your recommendations and other steps that they have taken? >> we have assessed those actions as positive steps in the right direction. we cannot emphasize enough that we believe that top leadership and senior leadership is imperative in order for those recommendations to be implemented. we continuously follow up on the limitation of the implementation of the recommendations and we will do so at this point in time and often time in our reporting on programs we do include those status reports. statuses are also published on our website as well, so you as well as the public at large have opportunities to look at the progress that is being made on those recommendations. >> so i take it that you are satisfied with what they are doing now? but you are going to be
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monitoring it in the future. >> yes. the steps as it relates to the recommendations that we have are all steps that we have proposed. they also established timelines on the report. so, that is also very important as to whether or not they need the milestones and hopefully those will be immediate milestones in so with respect their we do continue to follow -- as i said -- and if there are problems, we do note that. >> i yield back. >> thank you back. as we conclude the program is so important to help provide security for american families. could you tell the american people that is how many state, local, federal agencies that you work with -- what is the value of surplus equipment that you provide? >> we have 8621 agencies in the
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program. the property on the books of those folks for the program is over 1.5 million pieces of equipment valued over $2.4 billion in original acquisition value that is the good that we are providing. >> we appreciate a government accountability office, your success in working with the dla. at this time, we shall adjourn and we thank all of you for being here today. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit]
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