*	' U.S. Environmental Protection Agency	n-p-0705
f JHL \ Office of Inspector General	September 26, 2011
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At a Glance
Why We Did This Review
We performed this review to
determine whether the U.S.
Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) has adequate
controls for safeguarding
personal computers.
Specifically, we sought to
determine (1) whether EPA
has adequate controls in place
for tracking and disposing of
personal computers, and
(2) the status of EPA-owned
personal computers replaced
under the Customer
Technology Solutions (CTS)
service contract.
EPA's Office of
Administration and
Resources Management
manages the Agency's
personal property. During
fiscal year 2009, EPA
contracted its desktop
computer services with the
CTS service contract. The
Office of Environmental
Information has primary
oversight of the contract.
For further information,
contact our Office of
Congressional and Public
Affairs at (202) 566-2391.
The full report is at:
20110926-11 -P-0705.pdf
Catalyst for Improving the Environment
EPA's Contract Oversight and Controls Over
Personal Computers Need Improvement
What We Found
EPA paid the CTS contractor a total of $489,734 over an 11-month period for
3,343 seats—a standard seat includes a leased computer with accessories and
technical support—not ordered by the Agency during the period. In addition, EPA
did not accept the contractor's monthly asset management performance self-rating
for over a year because of its nonperformance in properly accounting for and
tracking assets. As a result, EPA should take action to reduce the minimum
number of seats requirement in the CTS contract. If EPA does not make changes
to the CTS contract, EPA may pay as much as $1.4 million more through
September 2012 for personal computer standard seats that it did not order, for a
total potential payment of $1.9 million for seats not ordered.
Because EPA did not safeguard and track personal computers to ensure proper
replacement and disposal in accordance with property regulations, it cannot
account for 638 personal computers valued at over $1 million. EPA did not know
the status of these personal computers, some of which may have been replaced
under the CTS contract. EPA's Personal Property Policy and Procedures Manual
outlines requirements for property staff to ensure the effective accountability,
utilization, and disposal of personal property. EPA should improve controls for
updating data in the fixed assets database, and should retain property acquisition
documentation in accordance with retention requirements. In addition, the
Agency should have a separation of duties in its property staff positions and
consider assigning permanent property positions.
What We Recommend
We recommend that the Assistant Administrator for Environmental Information
and Chief Information Officer review and/or modify the CTS contract to adjust
the minimum standard seat requirement to eliminate monthly payments for CTS
computers that EPA will not need. We recommend that the Assistant
Administrator for Administration and Resources Management update the property
manual to require the separation of duties in property staff positions and consider
assigning permanent property positions throughout the Agency to ensure that there
are safeguards over EPA's assets. We also recommend that the Assistant
Administrator for Administration and Resources Management develop and
implement processes that would (1) require property staff to routinely review and
update the Fixed Assets Subsystem database, and (2) ensure that property staff
adhere to records retention requirements. EPA disagreed with our first
recommendation and we consider it unresolved and are working toward a
resolution. EPA agreed with the remaining three recommendations.