A GSA review has found "clear deficiencies" with performance awards, acting GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini said in a blog post on July 17. (Staff file photo)
The General Services Administration is dramatically scaling back its bonus program for employees, as well as freezing new hiring.
Executive bonuses at the agency will be cut 85 percent through fiscal 2013, and performance awards given by the administrator’s office are being canceled for the rest of the year.
Acting administrator Dan Tangherlini said in a blog post Tuesday that a review of the agency he is conducting has uncovered a “high award rate” and “questions about whether performance goals are set at a high enough level through the agency.”
“This review has uncovered clear deficiencies in the area of performance awards,” Tangherlini said.
The move comes as GSA is conducting a top-to-bottom review of all its operations, including its performance awards system and travel operations.
The changes come after the April inspector general’s report detailing wasteful spending at the $823,000 2010 Western Regions Conference in Las Vegas that toppled agency leadership.
Tangherlini said the agency is eliminating all award stores programs — where employees had access to prizes such as iPods and digital cameras.
The GSA IG found that thousands of dollars worth of equipment used for an employee awards program at GSA’s Region 9 office went missing or was stolen.
Tangherlini said the agency will also freeze hiring until after the top-to-bottom review is complete.
“I believe that these immediate changes will help the agency achieve better clarity about our compensation and hiring process as we continue to bring the maximum level of efficiency and effectiveness to the work we do every day,” Tangherlini said.