RSC American Worker Report Deserves Consideration in Congress | Citizens Against Government Waste

RSC American Worker Report Deserves Consideration in Congress

The WasteWatcher

The House Republican Study Committee, under the leadership of Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.), has issued its final task force report for the 116th Congress. On September 22, the American Worker Task Force, led by Rep. Andy Barr (R-Ky.), released the “Reclaiming the American Dream: Proposals to Empower the Workers of Today and Tomorrow” has more than 100 recommendations to improve education, reform labor policy, and update welfare programs to increase opportunities for individuals and families across the country.

Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) has been promoting the RSC Task Force proposals since I spoke at a briefing on February 6, 2020, when the first report, from the Government Efficiency, Accountability, and Reform (GEAR) Task Force, was released.

While all of the American Worker Task Force recommendations deserve to be considered by Congress, there are four that CAGW suggests should be a priority:

1. Increase the investments available for all retirement savings accounts. The Department of Labor issued guidance on May 19, 2020 to give individuals with defined contribution plans the same chance to invest in funds that include private equity investments as defined benefit pension plans have had for many years. Codifying this proposal into law would level the playing field, provide more choices, increase the return on investment, and allow greater control over retirement accounts for all workers.

2.  Increase local control over education. The Task Force includes several proposals to better allow education policy to be set by local school boards, parents, and educators, who understand their students’ needs far better than bureaucrats in Washington, D.C., including the creation of block grants for Head Start and Chapter 1 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

3.  Promote policies at the federal level that will result in occupational licensing reforms. While licenses for nearly all professions and businesses are administered by the states, reforms in federal laws regarding licensing boards and requirements for funding under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act would result in more job opportunities throughout the country.

4.  Reduce waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement, including improper payments, for programs like the Supplemental Assistance Nutrition Program, Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (food stamps). In fiscal year 2019, Medicaid had an improper payment rate of 14.9 percent and $57.3 billion in improper payments. CAGW has been pushing for a 50 percent reduction in improper payments for many years.

The RSC's task force reports include dozens of recommendations that CAGW has proposed over our 36-year history. The proposals form a template for what Republicans would do should they regain the majority in the House of Representatives. They should be read by every American who cares about whether the nation moves forward in the next Congress with genuine reforms across the government or remains mired in the wasteful and inefficient status quo.