CAGW Recommendations for Trump Administration's Nickel Plan- HUD

November 1, 2018

The Honorable Ben Carson
Secretary, Department of Housing Urban Development
451 7th Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20410

Dear Secretary Carson,

During a meeting on October 17, 2018, President Trump directed you and other members of his Cabinet to cut their department budgets by 5 percent in fiscal year (FY) 2019.  With a national debt of more than $21 trillion and the budget deficit soaring to its highest level since 2012, President Trump’s initiative will help to improve fiscal responsibility.

Since 1993, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) has annually published Prime Cuts, a comprehensive account of options the federal government possesses to reduce waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement.  The 2018 edition has 636 recommendations that would save $429.8 billion in the first year and $3.1 trillion over five years.  Since CAGW was established in 1984 following the release of the Grace Commission report under President Reagan, the implementation of recommendations similar to those in Prime Cuts has helped save taxpayers $1.8 trillion.

I urge you to consider the following recommendations for President Trump’s 5 percent spending cut directive that are included in Prime Cuts 2018, as well as proposed in whole or in part in the President’s Major Savings and Reforms for FYs 2018 and 2019.

  • Reduce costs across the Department of Housing and Urban Development rental assistance programs

                        1-Year Savings: $4.3 billion                    5-Year Savings: $21.4 billion

  • Eliminate funding for small grant programs that are duplicative or overlap with other federal, state, and local efforts

                        1-Year Savings: $54 million                    5-Year Savings: $270 million

  • Eliminate the HOME Investment Partnerships Program

                        1-Year Savings: $950 million                  5-Year Savings: $4.8 billion

  • Eliminate Community Development Block Grants

                        1-Year Savings: $3 billion                       5-Year Savings: $15 billion

  • Eliminate funding for the Choice Neighborhoods program

                        1-Year Savings: $150 million                  5-Year Savings: $750 million

Secretary Carson, thank you for your efforts to be a responsible steward of the taxpayers’ money.  Your work to fulfill President Trump’s 5 percent cut directive will show taxpayers that your department stands with them in rooting out wasteful spending in the federal government.

Sincerely,

Tom Schatz
President, CAGW

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