All Things Considered from NPR ran a story yesterday by Laura Sullivan on how empty government buildings are costing the taxpayers money in upkeep and maintenance fees

According to the article:

"Government estimates suggest there may be 77,000 empty or underutilized buildings across the country. Taxpayers own them, and even vacant, they're expensive. The Office of Management and Budget says these buildings could be costing taxpayers $1.7 billion a year."
Apparently the main database used to manage federal properties, the Federal Real Property profile, is incomplete and also inaccurate. Properties listed in great shape are actually crumbling, and are being utilized when empty. The head of the GSA is trying to help federal agencies leverage currently opened properties rather than leasing, and thus push for savings though the incomplete data hampers this effort.

Data maintenance/auditing is never easy and given the size and scope of the government's property database it is even harder in this particular case.

Governments Empty Buildings are Costing Taxpayers Billion by  ( Published on: 03.12.2014 and Accessed on: 03.14.2014