(UnitedVoice.com) – The FBI headquarters are located in the heart of Washington, DC. The Hoover Building, which opened in the 1970s, is located approximately half a mile from the White House and about a mile from Congress. That’s going to change soon.
The massive building that’s currently home to the agency’s headquarters is in bad shape. In 2015, The Washington Post reported the building was “falling apart.” That led to a search for a new location for the FBI to call home. The government recently announced the headquarters would be moving to Maryland, in the larger DC area. However, not everyone is happy about the decision.
Picking a New Home
The search for the FBI’s new location has taken years. The process started under former President Barack Obama. When former President Donald Trump took office, his administration scrapped plans to move the headquarters out of Washington, DC. Democrats claimed he did it for personal and financial reasons, but the president denied those claims.
When President Joe Biden took office, the search to find a new home for the building began again. On November 8, the General Services Administration (GSA) announced the FBI would move to Greenbelt, Maryland, in Prince George’s County. The decision caused outrage among Virginia officials, the other proposed location, and, perhaps more surprisingly, FBI Director Christopher Wray.
Opposition to Maryland
According to POLITICO, Wray sent a memo to FBI employees after the GSA’s announcement and expressed his displeasure. He pointed out that a three-person panel, made up of one FBI official and two GSA officials, recommended Virginia as the site for the new headquarters.
The director claimed the agency didn’t follow its own protocols when choosing Maryland. Instead of going with the panel’s recommendation, a political appointee reportedly unilaterally decided where the new headquarters would go. He also pointed to an October letter he wrote that raised concerns about potential conflicts of interest with Nina Albert, then-GSA commissioner of Public Building Service and the owner of the tract of land chosen.
The land where the new building will sit is owned by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, where Albert worked before she was appointed to the position in the GSA.
Virginia’s Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin and the state’s congressional members issued a statement objecting to the choice, as well. They called on the federal government to reverse the decision, saying the process was “irrevocably undermined and tainted” by the alleged conflicts of interest. That’s unlikely to happen. The White House has said the process was fair and unbiased.
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