Summarized by Kent Larsen
Top system? GAO likes LDS building upkeep plan
Deseret News 10Sep99 C6
By Lee Davidson: Deseret News Washington correspondent
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Faced with deteriorating facilities the U.S.
Department of Defense is looking for new ways to maintain its
facilities within budget. The General Accounting Office, called in
to look at the problem, has made a suggestion: copy the LDS Church's
The Church maintains 7,000 chapels and a half-dozen colleges worldwide,
in addition to many other administrative operations. These facilities
are managed through an office called the Capital Needs Analysis Center,
which is located at BYU. The office maintains a database of the
condition of all LDS properties worldwide, valued at $30 billion.
"Through regular inspection and careful monitoring of buildings and
their components, the center can reasonably estimate when repairs
should be made or components should be replaced. These life-cycle
estimates can then be used to plan repair and maintenance budgets,"
said the GAO's report.
The GAO was particularly impressed with the Church's emphasis on
preventative maintenance. "(LDS) officials told us that the idea
was to maintain a common minimum standard; to do so, monies must be
moved from relatively physically adequate facilities to those not as
adequate." The report says that the Church experienced some resistance
to the new system when it was implemented, but that the system is now