Watchdog To Look Into Selection of New FBI Headquarters Location

Watchdog To Look Into Selection of New FBI Headquarters Location

( – General Services Administration, a government watchdog group, is starting an investigation into the Biden administration’s decision to choose a Maryland location for the FBI’s new headquarters after legislators and the FBI director cited alleged inappropriate interference by an appointee.

The office’s inspector general, Robert Erickson, announced an immediate probe into the selection of Greenbelt, MD, after a search that spanned over ten years. The deliberations led to tense exchanges between the states of Virginia and Maryland. Ultimately, Maryland won after a tense lobbying round.

Both FBI and GSA officials formed a committee to offer recommendations based on years of combined experience. They ultimately recommended the site in Springfield, VA due to its close proximity with several other critical FBI locations and operations.

However, Nina M. Albert, the Biden-appointed GSA commissioner who previously served as vice president of the Metro Area Transit Authority, overruled the recommendation. MATA, her former employer, owned the land on which the new FBI headquarters is to be built.

FBI Director Christopher Wray admonished Albert’s decision, calling it a conflict of interest. He also accused Albert of altering the specified criteria just before the decision was to be made to specifically favor the site in Greenbelt. Delegates in Virginia issued a bipartisan request for the inquiry from Erickson’s office, claiming that the decision was “fouled by politics.”

The new site is expected to have room for 7,500 FBI agents and leaders. Officials believe it will spur significant economic activity in its immediate area.

The GSA claimed that its decision was completely impartial and that the decision by Albert, who left the organization in October, was approved by ethics officials. However, they also stated that they “welcome” a review of the decision.

Deliberations began for a new FBI headquarters building over ten years ago after the current site, the J. Edgar Hoover Building in downtown Washington DC, began deteriorating significantly. The build was declared obsolete and claimed that the agency’s size has outgrown its capacity. Officials determined it could no longer support the agency’s long-term vision and requested funding early in 2022 for a new building.

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