The Cutting Board: Wasteful ProgramsPosted by Randy | August 03, 2011
Every year, our federal government spends billions of dollars on duplicative, underutilized, and wasteful programs, something we cannot afford when, during the first three months of the year, our national debt was equivalent to 95 percent of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
We need to be making every effort to begin cutting those programs that are wasteful or unnecessary. Over the past several months, I have voted to end the following:
Neighborhood Stabilization Program. I voted to cancel the unobligated balances from this wasteful program. The NSP was established to provide funds to states and local governments to purchase, rehabilitate, and resell abandoned and foreclosed properties. The program has been plagued with problems since its inception. The Inspector General for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has identified multiple cases where NSP funds have been misused, while the Government Accountability Office has questioned whether the information systems in place at HUD are even capable of tracking the uses of this money.
Potential Savings: $1 billion
Mandatory Funding for School-based Health Center Construction. I voted to repeal a grant program requiring that Washington pay for the construction of hospital centers in schools that was included in the new healthcare law. The healthcare law mandated spending for construction and expansion of school based health centers every year through 2013.
Potential Savings: $100 million
Printing of Bills Introduced in Congress. I voted to end the wasteful mandatory printing of bills that are introduced in Congress. The GPO budget estimation for Fiscal Year 2011 alone to print 140,000 pages of bills, resolutions and amendments was more than $5.7 million.
Potential Savings: $35 million over ten years
Presidential Election Campaigns and Party Conventions Funding. I voted to eliminate taxpayer funding of presidential candidates and political conventions. The only people who benefit from taxpayer financing of campaigns are a handful of presidential candidates.
Potential Savings: $617 million
While these steps alone do not come close to addressing the magnitude of the spending crisis our nation faces, they are steps in the right direction to begin chipping away at our nation’s debt.
(Note: All savings totals are based off of estimations by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office)
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