WBIW: Messer Introduces SWAMP Act to Relocate Federal Agency Headquarters
January 28, 2018
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) recently introduced the SWAMP Act, which would require federal agencies to relocate their headquarters to places outside of Washington, D.C. when a new facility is needed.
The Strategic Withdrawal of Agencies from Meaningful Placement Act (SWAMP Act) would establish a bidding process for states and municipalities to compete for the relocation of a federal agency’s headquarters. Under current law, all departments and agencies of the federal government are required to be located in the District of Columbia, unless otherwise provided by Congress.
“With the election of President Trump, the American people sent a strong message that they wanted a government that better serves them, not Washington bureaucrats,” Messer said. “There’s no reason why the Department of Agriculture has to be in the District of Columbia when it could be located in Indiana or another heartland state.”
A recent study estimates that more than 1.7 million jobs, or 52 percent of jobs in the Washington, D.C. metro area, are tied to the federal government.
“Our legislation would help deliver on President Trump’s promise to drain the swamp and at the same time allow more communities across the United States to benefit from added jobs and increased economic growth,” Messer said.
The SWAMP Act would prohibit federal agencies from any new construction, major renovations, or lease agreements on existing headquarters within the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
Messer’s bill would also require the process to take into consideration any impact relocation would have on the local economy and workforce. It would also determine whether the new location has the capacity to carry out the mission and functions of the federal agency, and determine the impact relocation would have on national security interests.