Dan Tangherlini, acting administrator at the General Services Administration, said Tuesday that budget cuts has made the agency more important than ever.
“In this time of fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty, the role of the GSA and the expertise of our contracting officers have never been more vital,” Tangherlini said.
Tangherlini said in a video address at the kickoff to the GSA Training Conference and Expo inSan Antoniothat agencies must continue their critical operations while funding ways to scale back on overhead costs.
The White House tapped Tangherlini to replace Administrator Martha Johnson on April 2 and clean up the agency after GSA Inspector General Brian Miller released a scathing report documenting widespread waste and mismanagement, especially at GSA’s Region 9 office inSan Francisco.
The IG report detailed GSA’s spending on a lavish $822,000 2010 conference in Las Vegas and numerous other examples of waste. The report prompted not only Johnson’s resignation, but the firing of GSA Public Buildings Commissioner Bob Peck and Johnson’s senior counsel Stephen Leeds, and the placement of 10 employees on administrative leave.
He also condemned the actions of GSA employees who helped organize the conference and said the “misconduct was irresponsible, indefensible, and completely contrary to the way that GSA does business and delivers value to our customer agencies.”
“The circumstances of my arrival are well documented, and I won’t dwell on them, but I would like to say that the actions of those responsible for the Western Regions Conference cut to the heart of who we are and what we do,” Tangherlini said in the video.