WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) introduced her first bill of the 114th Congress, an enhanced and updated version of the Government Waste Reduction Act, a common sense bill that could save tens of billions of dollars for American taxpayers by rooting out waste in government while protecting middle class priorities. The bipartisan bill, introduced with Republican Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-8), takes action on recommendations the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) has made in reports to Congress—recommendations that have gathered dust when they could be saving American taxpayers tens of billions of dollars.
“Reducing our national debt and deficit is one of my top priorities as a Member of Congress,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “Our common sense bill represents a bipartisan first step towards attacking our national debt by targeting waste to save taxpayers billions of dollars. I refuse to balance our budget on the backs of working families, seniors and Veterans and am proud to reintroduce my bill that puts them first. I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to move our nation onto sounder fiscal footing.”
“Cutting down on government waste is a step in the right direction as we strive to get our fiscal house in order without jeopardizing essential programs,” said Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick. “By working together, we can follow through on waste reduction plans already in place – giving us common ground to begin the larger discussion on reining in government spending and reducing our $18 trillion national debt. As a member of No Labels, I’m proud to once again introduce this smart legislation with Congresswoman Bustos and increase the number of members looking to fix the way Washington spends, not just fight.”
For example, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services estimate they could achieve $21 billion in savings as a result of implementing widespread use of fraud detection systems. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimates that enhancing online services, such as providing taxpayers with the ability to access account information, would produce hundreds of millions of dollars in savings through operational efficiencies.
Bustos’ bill is an enhanced and updated version of the first bill she introduced as a Member of Congress in 2013. Her bill includes two additional GAO reports that were released since her original 2013 bill introduction, as well as a mechanism to further evaluate government efficiency and set up a repository for best practices to support agencies in efforts to improve effectiveness.
Specifically, the Government Waste Reduction Act would:
- Establish the Independent Government Waste Reduction Board which would be tasked with developing legislative proposals related to the GAO recommendations;
- Assess Federal programs for economy, efficiency and effectiveness; and
- Set up a repository for best practices to support agencies in efforts to improve effectiveness.
The full text of the Government Waste Reduction Act can be viewed HERE.
Video of Bustos speaking about the bill’s introduction is HERE.