40 U.S. Code § 3101 - Public buildings under control of Administrator of General Services

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All public buildings outside of the District of Columbia and outside of military reservations purchased or erected out of any appropriation under the control of the Administrator of General Services, and the sites of the public buildings, are under the exclusive jurisdiction and control, and in the custody of, the Administrator. The Administrator may take possession of the buildings and assign and reassign rooms in the buildings to federal officials, clerks, and employees that the Administrator believes should be furnished with offices or rooms in the buildings.

Historical and Revision Notes



Source (U.S. Code)

Source (Statutes at Large)



July 1, 1898, ch. 546, § 1 (6th complete par. on p. 614), 30 Stat. 614.

The word “subtreasuries” in the 6th complete paragraph on p. 614 of section 1 of the Act of July 1, 1898 (ch. 546, 30 Stat. 614), is omitted because section 1 (words in par. under heading “Independent Treasury”) of the Act of May 29, 1914 (ch. 214, 41 Stat. 654) discontinued subtreasuries. The word “post-offices” in section 1 is omitted because section 1 of Executive Order No. 6166 (eff. June 10, 1933) transferred administration of post office buildings to the Post Office Department. The words “courthouses, customhouses, appraiser’s stores, barge offices, and other” are omitted as unnecessary. The words “or are in course of construction” are omitted as obsolete. The words “Administrator of General Services” are substituted for “Treasury Department” and “Secretary of the Treasury” [subsequently changed to “Federal Works Agency” and “Federal Works Administrator” because of sections 301 and 303, respectively, of Reorganization Plan No. I of 1939 (eff. July 1, 1939, 53 Stat. 1426, 1427)] because of section 103(a) of the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 (ch. 288, 63 Stat. 380), which is restated as section 303(c) [303(b)] of the revised title.

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Missing Children Procedures in Public Buildings

Pub. L. 108–21, title III, subtitle D, Apr. 30, 2003, 117 Stat. 665, provided that:


“This subtitle may be cited as the ‘Code Adam Act of 2003’.”


“In this subtitle, the following definitions apply:

“(1) Child.—The term ‘child’ means an individual who is 17 years of age or younger.

“(2) Code Adam alert.—The term ‘Code Adam alert’ means a set of procedures used in public buildings to alert employees and other users of the building that a child is missing.

“(3) Designated authority.—The term ‘designated authority’ means—

“(A) with respect to a public building owned or leased for use by an Executive agency—

“(i) except as otherwise provided in this paragraph, the Administrator of General Services;

“(ii) in the case of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts;

“(iii) in the case of buildings under the jurisdiction, custody, and control of the Smithsonian Institution, the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution; or

“(iv) in the case of another public building for which an Executive agency has, by specific or general statutory authority, jurisdiction, custody, and control over the building, the head of that agency;

“(B) with respect to the Supreme Court Building, the Marshal of the Supreme Court; with respect to the Thurgood Marshall Federal Judiciary Building, the Director of the Administrative Office of United States Courts; and with respect to all other public buildings owned or leased for use by an establishment in the judicial branch of government, the General Services Administration in consultation with the United States Marshals Service; and

“(C) with respect to a public building owned or leased for use by an establishment in the legislative branch of government, the Capitol Police Board.

“(4) Executive agency.—The term ‘Executive agency’ has the same meaning such term has under section 105 of title 5, United States Code.

“(5) Federal agency.—The term ‘Federal agency’ means any Executive agency or any establishment in the legislative or judicial branches of the Government.

“(6) Public building.—The term ‘public building’ means any building (or portion thereof) owned or leased for use by a Federal agency.


“(a) In general.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act [April 30, 2003], the designated authority for a public building shall establish procedures for locating a child that is missing in the building.

“(b) Notification and search procedures.—Procedures established under this section shall provide, at a minimum, for the following:

“(1) Notifying security personnel that a child is missing.

“(2) Obtaining a detailed description of the child, including name, age, eye and hair color, height, weight, clothing, and shoes.

“(3) Issuing a Code Adam alert and providing a description of the child, using a fast and effective means of communication.

“(4) Establishing a central point of contact.

“(5) Monitoring all points of egress from the building while a Code Adam alert is in effect.

“(6) Conducting a thorough search of the building.

“(7) Contacting local law enforcement.

“(8) Documenting the incident.”

Prohibition of Cigarette Sales to Minors in Federal Buildings and Lands

Pub. L. 104–52, title VI, § 636, Nov. 19, 1995, 109 Stat. 507, known as the “Prohibition of Cigarette Sales to Minors in Federal Buildings and Lands Act”, required the Administrator of General Services and the head of each Federal agency to promulgate regulations, to be reported to Congress, prohibiting the sale of tobacco products in vending machines or distribution of free samples of tobacco products located in or around any Federal building under the jurisdiction of the Administrator or agency head, and provided that the appropriate congressional committees would promulgate regulations prohibiting tobacco sales in vending machines in certain congressional buildings.