WASHINGTON, DC—A top official with the General ServicesAdministration pledged before a House subcommittee onTuesday that the agency will work to reduce its backlog of expiredleases.

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GSA Public Buildings Commissioner Norman Dong,during testimony at a roundtable held by the Transportationand Infrastructure Committee's Subcommittee on EconomicDevelopment, Public Buildings and Emergency Management,admitted the lease backlog has created a considerable amount ofuncertainly for area landlords. He noted that many building ownersstruggle to secure financing for their properties with thegovernment's status as a long-term tenant unresolved, according tothe Washington Business Journal.

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Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Lou Barlettabelieves that with office vacancy rates high and interest rateslow, the federal government could take advantage of reduced rentalrates. Approximately 50% of the 98 million square feet of space theGSA leases across the country are set to expire in the next fiveyears.

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"It can't be business as usual. There needs to be a sense ofurgency here to really leverage this opportunity and not let thewindow pass us by," the GSA's Dong said. See story in theWashington Business Journal.

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John Jordan

John Jordan is a veteran journalist with 36 years of print and digital media experience.