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Report to Congress cautious on FBI overhaul

From Terry Frieden
CNN Washington

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The General Accounting Office issued a cautious endorsement Friday of the FBI's reorganization plans, saying it's too early to tell whether the proposed resource shifts will be sufficient.

Comptroller General David Walker issued a 24-page report after Congress asked for an initial assessment of the FBI's plans.

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"Is this the right amount of resources to shift to counterterrorism at this time?" the report said. "It is probably unrealistic to ask the FBI or anyone else for the answer to this question at this time."

The report cites six areas of the reorganization and realignment that will require more in-depth review and scrutiny.

The areas cited were:

  • Progress in developing a new strategic plan;
  • Review of broader human capital issues;
  • FBI uses of the funds appropriated to fight terrorism;
  • Measurement of performance and results;
  • Implementation of the attorney general's revised guidelines;
  • Upgrading of information technology and analytic capability.
  • The report was issued at a hearing of the House Appropriations subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and State, chaired by Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Virginia.

    Early reaction came in a statement from the FBI Agents Association obtained by CNN, expressing support for FBI Director Robert Mueller's plan to provide greater support to field offices and improve coordination through the national Joint Terrorism Task Force.

    The group represents most of the FBI's active agents nationwide.




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