National Park Service: Federal Taxpayers Could Have Benefited More From Potomac Yard Land Exchange

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A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Settling 30 years of sometimes acrimonious dispute, the National Park Service completed an exchange of land interests on two vacant parcels of land in Potomac Yard in March 2000. However, the Park Service could have received more than $15 million from the private developer--rather than owing the developer $14 million--if the exchanged interests had been appropriately valued. As a federal agency, the Park Service has a responsibility to protect federal taxpayers' interests when it acquires or conveys land interests. Yet, the Park Service did not do ... continued below

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United States. General Accounting Office. March 15, 2001.

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Description

A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Settling 30 years of sometimes acrimonious dispute, the National Park Service completed an exchange of land interests on two vacant parcels of land in Potomac Yard in March 2000. However, the Park Service could have received more than $15 million from the private developer--rather than owing the developer $14 million--if the exchanged interests had been appropriately valued. As a federal agency, the Park Service has a responsibility to protect federal taxpayers' interests when it acquires or conveys land interests. Yet, the Park Service did not do so when it instructed the appraiser to derive a value for development on the Alexandria parcel that was not shown to be reasonably probable, or when it used an appraised value on the Arlington parcel that understated the worth of the Park Service's interests. Consequently, the Park Service gave the developer credit for losses that might not have realistically occurred and did not receive enough credit for allowing the developer to develop the Arlington parcel. However, the transaction is now fully executed--as in similar situations when a government agency pays too much for an item under a contract--it is unlikely that the Park Service can recover any funds."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • March 15, 2001

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 11, 2014, 5:03 a.m.

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United States. General Accounting Office. National Park Service: Federal Taxpayers Could Have Benefited More From Potomac Yard Land Exchange, report, March 15, 2001; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc293890/: accessed September 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.