Defense Surplus Equipment Disposal: Background Information [Updated September 10, 2007] [open pdf - 60KB]
From the Summary: "The Department of Defense (DOD), through the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), has a policy for disposing of government equipment and supplies considered 'surplus' or deemed unnecessary to the agency's currently designated mission. The effort to dispose of surplus military equipment dates back to the end of World War II, when the federal government decided to reduce a massive inventory of surplus military equipment by making such equipment available to civilians. At a July 25, 2006, hearing before the House Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security, Emerging Threats, and International Relations, Major General Bennie Williams, DLA Director of Logistics Operations, identified four target areas for managing surplus military equipment: (1) processing controls for batch lot items and materials requiring demilitarization; (2) processing of items coded with Local Stock Numbers received at the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service (DRMS); (3) improved controls regarding access to DRMS inventory assets; and (4) reducing the concurrent procurement of items available at DRMS."
CRS Report for Congress, RS20549