Thirteen federal agencies took nearly half a billion dollars off the top of Congressional earmarks for administrative expenses in 2008, nearly 3 percent of the total amount that members of Congress had directed to pet projects in federal spending bills.
The Defense Department led the way with nearly $240 million deducted from earmarks. Several agencies, including the Education and Housing and Urban Development Departments, did not withhold any money to process and provide oversight of earmarks.
The findings, summarized in a report from the White House Office of Management and Budget, provide the first governmentwide look at how much federal agencies keep from earmarked money.
The report was done at the request of Senator Ben Nelson, Democrat of Nebraska, who said he first learned of the practice three years ago when the recipient of an earmark he had requested notified him that it had not gotten the full amount.
“This is an issue of transparency,” Mr. Nelson said. “Some of these agencies are clearly taking money without any authority, and they should not have these off-budget expense accounts.”
- THE LESS THE GOVERNMENT TAKES FROM US IN TAXES, THE LESS THEY CAN SPEND AND THE LESS THEY CAN STEAL AND THE LESS THEY CAN STEER TO THEIR CRONIES AND THE LESS THAT CAN BE WASTED AND MISSPENT.
- THAT'S WHY SMALL GOVERNMENT IS ALWAYS THE BEST GOVERNMENT.
THE GOP MUST REGAIN ITS SMALL GOVERNMENT ATTITUDE.
THEN THE MAJORITY OF VOTERS WILL ONCE AGAIN VOTE GOP. IN 2010.