Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Government News

June 29, 2011

Proposed Senate Rules Change, Requiring Review of All Legislation for Duplication, Overlapping Programs

“Americans have made it clear that they want Washington to start living within its mean..."

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK), Mark Udall (D-CO), Rand Paul (R-KY), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO) today introduced an amendment that would require all legislation to be reviewed before it is considered by the Senate to prevent the creation of duplicative and overlapping government programs.  In March, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report identifying hundreds of duplicative and overlapping programs costing approximately $217 billion a year.  GAO stated “reducing or eliminating duplication, overlap, or fragmentation could potentially save billions of taxpayer dollars annually and help agencies provide more efficient and effective services.”  GAO found 47 separate job training programs, 88 economic development programs, 82 teacher quality programs, and 56 financial literacy programs.  Despite GAO’s findings, Congress has been slow to address this problem.

“Congress creates hundreds of new programs every year, adding to the thousands that already exist.  Every time we create a new program that duplicates an existing program, taxpayers end up footing the bill for both programs.  At a time when our $14 trillion debt has become our greatest national security threat, that is an absolute embarrassment.  No family in America would handle their finances in such a haphazard and careless manner.  Creating new programs may seem more politically popular than reviewing existing programs.  Yet, I am convinced the American people are demanding the kind of common sense oversight and stewardship of their tax dollars this bill calls for.  I’m pleased many of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle agree,” said Dr. Coburn.

“Too often, it seems like Congress is so focused on creating new programs that we forget our job is supposed to include oversight and reform,” Mark Udall said. “That’s why our amendment to cut down on the number of wasteful and duplicative programs is crucial.  It’s an important step that will help change the culture in Congress, cut down on waste and save taxpayers money.”

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Government News
  • Weeding Process Continues At Capitol

    The first major deadline of the legislative session has now passed with work on House bills in the chamber completed on March 15.

    March 22, 2012

  • DHS Reforms Advance

    This week was the last one for House bills to be considered in their chamber of origin, and we took up several major issues.

    Among the most important were measures reforming the Department of Human Services.

    March 15, 2012

  • Annual GAO Report Exposes More Duplication in the Federal Budget, Less Responsibility Coming Out of Washington

    Members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs, Chairman Joseph Lieberman (ID-CT), Ranking Member Susan Collins (R-ME), and Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) released the following statements today regarding the second annual Government Accountability Office (GAO) report identifying ongoing duplication and areas for costs savings throughout the federal government.

    February 28, 2012

  • Roberts Seeks Local Control on Meth Issue

    Legislation filed by state Rep. Sean Roberts would allow local communities to impose ordinances designed to reduce meth crime.

                House Bill 2802, by Roberts, would allow towns to decide if the meth ingredient pseudoephedrine should require a prescription.

    February 24, 2012

  • Lawmakers Focus on Meth Problem

    The challenge of combating methamphetamine was a major focus of lawmakers this week. Two significant bills were voted on in House committee. One failed, and one progressed.

    February 23, 2012

  • Coburn, Burr Unveil Plan to Save Medicare, the Seniors’ Choice Act

    Today, U.S. Senators Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) and Richard Burr (R-NC) unveiled the Seniors’ Choice Act, a legislative proposal to help America’s seniors by building a stronger, more sustainable Medicare program through immediate and longer-term reforms, many rooted in long-standing, bipartisan ideas. Non-partisan experts have warned the current Medicare program is facing insolvency due to unsustainable growth, and the Seniors’ Choice Act would fix its shortcomings so that it remains a viable option for seniors participating in the program now and for future enrollees.

    February 16, 2012

  • Fallin highlights more cuts to Oklahma income tax

    Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin provided more details of her plan to cut the personal income tax for all Oklahomans during her State of the State address to lawmakers on Monday, but had few specifics on how she plans to pay for the ambitious proposal.

    February 6, 2012

  • Lawmaker seeks spending limit on Okla. Legislature

    An Oklahoma lawmaker is pushing legislation that would place new constitutional limits on state spending.

    Republican state Rep. Elise Hall of Oklahoma City says that Oklahoma's public sector could grow too fast without more spending limits.

    January 27, 2012

  • 2011 Wastebook Dr. Coburn Releases New Report on Wasteful Government Spending in 2011:

    U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) today released a new oversight report, “Wastebook 2011” that highlights over $6.5 billion in examples of some of the most egregious ways your taxpayer dollars were wasted. This report details 100 of the countless unnecessary, duplicative and low-priority projects spread throughout the federal government. 

     

    December 20, 2011 1 Photo

  • House unveils DHS strategy

    House Speaker Kris Steele and a bipartisan group of five representatives today unveiled the first steps of a strategy to reform the Oklahoma Department of Human Services.

    The House’s aggressive, four-pronged strategy is designed to improve DHS through significant study of and potential reforms to governance structure, agency structure, personnel policy and resource allocation. The plan is in response to a shared desire between House members, agency officials and other stakeholders to improve delivery of services by DHS, particularly for children in state custody.

    October 19, 2011

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