Chapter II

Facility Planning Process

Overview

A principal component of the space acquisition process is the Statewide Facility and Capital Plan (FACCAP) which outlines how each state agency will meet its facility needs over a five-year period. Legislation establishing FACCAP was first passed in 1977. The Department of Administrative Services was initially responsible for its preparation, however, in 1981 this responsibility was transferred to the Office of Policy and Management (OPM).

In 1988, the firm of Arthur Andersen was retained to conduct a review of Connecticut's FACCAP. The emphasis of the report was to make FACCAP a more meaningful planning and decision tool. As a result, changes were made to timeframes as well as some format and content components. Since that time, the statutes have been amended a number of times to change reporting requirements and submittal dates.

Published biennially, the plan identifies the facility needs of state agencies and how those needs will be met. The plan is based on input provided by multiple executive branch agencies and actions of the General Assembly.

OPM is responsible for the overall plan preparation and manages the initial stages of the plan's development. OPM's Asset Management unit coordinates agency plan proposals with the state budget. Through the FACCAP planning and budget process, OPM becomes responsible for identifying and approving program levels and associated state agency facility needs. DPW implements the facility projects necessary to carry out agency programs by leasing and/or purchasing appropriate space.

Development of the State Facility Plan

The space planning and implementation process is complex and involves most state agencies and departments. Each agency undertakes a planning process and determines its space needs and transmits these needs annually to OPM and DPW. The degree to which state agencies undertake space planning and define their space needs varies considerably from agency to agency depending in large part on the size of the agency, its mission and functions.

The process for developing the State Facility Plan, as specified in state statute, is shown in Figure II-1 and outlined below.

Chapter TitleSteps in the development process. In even-numbered years each state agency, following guidelines established by OPM, is required to project the agency's facility needs over a five-year period based on its program plans. DPW is required to offer state agencies technical assistance in developing their individual facility plans. State agencies must submit their proposed facility plan to OPM and DPW by September first of each even-numbered year. The agency's submission is suppose to identify:

DPW must review the agency plans for factors such as cost, space requirements, and implementation scheduling and the objectives of DPW regarding the maintenance, improvement, and replacement of each agency's facilities. DPW must complete its review and forward its comments to OPM by December first of each even-numbered year.

This information is provided to OPM's Asset Management Unit which works in conjunction with OPM's Budget Division. The OPM budget staff reviews the information and makes recommendations based on anticipated staffing and program levels at each agency. Together, the OPM staff review the requests for consistency with the agency's programs and fiscal resources.

OPM is responsible for integrating all state agency space need requests into a unified plan. The plan must include all the proposed leases and capital projects and a statement on how the actions called for in the plan promote the state's goal of colocation of human service agencies. This version of the facilities plan must be provided to the State Properties Review Board (SPRB) by February fifteenth of each odd-numbered year. The board must review the plan and submit its recommendations to OPM by March first.

After considering the board's comments, OPM finalizes the plan and is required to present its recommended facility plan to the General Assembly by March fifteenth of each odd-numbered year. The legislature does not formally act on the entire plan, rather the elements of the plan approved by the General Assembly are considered to be those included in the operating and capital budgets adopted by the legislature.

OPM is required to update and modify its recommended facility plan in accordance with the actions of the General Assembly. Once OPM completes the required revisions the plan is known as the State Facility Plan. It is important to note, the plan that emerges from this process is an advisory document intended to guide the actions of DPW.

FACCAP goals and trends. FACCAP establishes a number of state goals and implementing policies to be considered whenever space utilization and space management decisions are made. These goals are guided by four general principles: 1) cost efficiency, 2) quality of service delivery, 3) preserving the state's infrastructure, and 4) the need to provide a comfortable and space-efficient working environment for state employees. A complete listing of the FACCAP goals and implementing policies are provided in Appendix A.

Among the FACCAP's stated goals is the reduction of dependency on leased facilities. To achieve this goal, the state's policy has been to discontinue leases where feasible, limit the use of leased space to interim needs, and replace leases with state-owned facilities as soon as it is economically feasible. FACCAP trend analysis suggested that since FY 96-97 lease space has accounted for no more than five percent of the total space used. Table II-1 provides FACCAP analysis of the amount and percentage of state space leased and owned by fiscal year.

As the table shows, the total amount of space owned and leased by the state has increased 19 percent from 45,013,348 in FY 91 to 53,572,502 in FY 00. The overall square footage of state property owned has increased over the years by almost 23 percent. At the same time, the amount and percentage of leased space has gradually decreased at almost the same rate. However, as the FACCAP analysis notes, it is unlikely that leased space can be eliminated altogether. Due to programmatic needs, many agencies are required to be located in specific geographic areas necessitating continued reliance on leased facilities. As such, OPM's Assets management policy focuses on ensuring that no agency is place in leased space if appropriate state-owned space is available and can be renovated in a timely and economical fashion.

           

Table II-1. Square Footage and Percentage of State Leased and State Owned Space.

FY

SQFT Leased

SQFT Owned

Total SQFT

% Owned

% Leased

90-91

3,428,429

41,584,919

45,013,348

92%

8%

91-92

3,353,246

42,607,716

45,960,962

93%

7%

92-93

3,355,287

43,665,483

47,020,770

93%

7%

93-94

3,191,299

44,773,120

47,964,419

93%

7%

94-95

3,065,260

46,917,906

49,983,166

94%

6%

95-96

2,767,542

49,234,098

52,001,640

95%

5%

96-97

2,556,562

49,517,603

52,074,165

95%

5%

97-98

2,537,360

50,083,197

52,620,557

95%

5%

98-99

2,561,686

50,961,156

53,522,842

95%

5%

99-00

2,607,906

50,964,596

53,572,502

95%

5%

Source: Department of Public Works

Determination of Agency Space Requirements. Space requirements including the amount of space, location, and any required special features are primarily developed by the client agency. In 1991, DPW developed a space standards manual intended to formally establish guidelines to determine the amounts of space needed by state agencies. The manual presents a series of planning approaches and methods for use by state agencies in forecasting and calculating space necessary to fulfill their missions.

The manual's standards and techniques are based on definitions and space assignment criteria generally accepted by the private and public sectors during the late 80s and early 90s. The department recognizes the need to revise the standards to conform with industry guidelines and plans to do so in near future. Until that time, the manual serves as the state's principal reference for determining the amount of assignable floor area needed for personnel, equipment, and support functions.

The manual contains three different space planning models that can be used to determine the space needs of state agencies. The model used to determine space depends on the level of detail involved and the purpose for which the results will be used.

According to the manual, levels I and II are useful planning methods for projecting space needs as part of the five year FACCAP process while level III is applicable to specific facilities situations where a discrete project has been identified and designs are being developed.

Level I is a general long-range forecasting model that only requires the input of the total number of personnel employed by a state agency in order to arrive at gross square feet requirements. This approach provides a preliminary rough basis for projected facility requirements when detailed information on staffing levels by specific category and support functions is not available. As such, level I projections are useful only in making initial approximation of space needs.

Level II provides a slightly more detailed approach to determining space needs. It determines space needs based on the projected numbers and categories of personnel, various support functions, and certain assumptions regarding building efficiency. This planning approach makes certain assumptions with regard to workspace for agency employees and floor area requirements for support functions and equipment. The format is intended to be flexible enough to adapt to unique or extraordinary requirements until projected numbers are finalized.

The third level of planning for agency space needs requires firm data on agency employees within specific position categories, as well as actual requirements for support space and equipment and furniture. Level III is used by DPW to process agency requests for space. DPW staff is available to assist and work with state agencies in using these space planning methods and standards.

Requests for space. Once the statewide facility plan has been developed and finalized by OPM, all requests for space are handled by a DPW staff member within Risk Management. Every month, the DPW staff person identifies which agency leases will be expiring or contain a lease option to be executed within the next 18 months. Expiration notices are mailed requesting the client agency confirm the continued need for the existing lease or submit a request for new or additional space.

According to DPW staff, client agencies are typically given one month to respond. If an agency does not respond, a follow-up notice is sent. Once the agency submits its request, the Risk Management staff member is responsible for reviewing all space requests' conformance to FACCAP and ensures the appropriate level III space standards have been applied. When necessary, DPW provides the client agency with technical assistance in figuring space requirements. DPW must also check the state's inventory to determine if there is suitable and available space in state-owned facilities.

If an agency makes a request for space not approved in FACCAP, DPW obtains supporting documentation from the agency, re-evaluates the request for level III standard specifications, and forwards the request to OPM for review and approval through the emergency certification process outlined in statute. (This process is further explained in a subsequent chapter.) Without OPM's approval, the space acquisition process may not continue.

 

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