CAGW Releases December 2016 WasteWatcher

For Immediate Release Contact: Curtis Kalin 202-467-5318
December 20, 2016  

(Washington, D.C.) – Today Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) released its December 2016 WasteWatcher, a monthly dispatch to members of the news media, highlighting some of the most prominent fiscal issues affecting American taxpayers.  The stories from its December edition of WasteWatcher are listed in part as follows:

Anachronistic Earmark Offering from Culberson, Rogers, and Rooney

By Sean Kennedy

Americans might fondly remember 2006:  Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest was the top grossing movie, Sexyback by Justin Timberlake was at the top of the charts, and Bob Barker announced his retirement from The Price is Right.  Other events might not harken such recollections, particularly the record $29 billion worth of earmarks that members of Congress stuffed into the fiscal year (FY) 2006 appropriations bills.  Read the full story here.

Power of the Purse and Budget Process Reform

By Rachel Cole

Since the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 (CBA) was first passed, Congress has been able to pass the 12 appropriations bills on time on only three occasions; the most recent was in 1997.  Although the CBA has been amended several times, the budget process remains as broken as it is confusing. Read the full story here.

Fixing the FCC

By Deborah Collier

President-elect Trump is making it clear that there will be many changes made to how federal agencies work, including significant streamlining of regulations in order to generate economic growth.  At or near the top of that long list is the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which has acted more as an activist arm of the White House over the past eight years than an independent technical body.  Read the full story here.

Beware of Midnight Regulations

By Curtis Kalin

As President Barack Obama’s term comes to an end, many federal agencies and departments are attempting to beat the clock by jamming a flurry of new regulations onto the books before January 20, 2017.  Read the full story here.

Recovery Auditors and the Administrative Law Backlog: More “Fake News” Debunked

By Leslie Paige

In the absence of data and facts, it is all too easy for other narratives to take hold and difficult to root them out once they gain traction.  Such is the case with one such public policy problem, the recovery audit contracting (RAC) program at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that oversees two of the nation’s largest, most important, and most costly entitlement programs, Medicare and Medicaid.  Read the full story here.

The Trump Trifecta: Three Branches, New Faces

By William M. Christian

The 2016 GOP sweep of all three branches of government amounts to a political trifecta.  The American people will be governed, for at least the next four years, by a very different president and a very different cabinet.  Read the full story here.

NPS Ban on Bottled Water – “Going Forward”

By Elizabeth Wright

For more than a year, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) has been investigating the National Park Service’s (NPS) ban on the sale of bottled water, believing it was an obtrusive inconvenience to visitors and a waste of taxpayer dollars.  Read the full story here.

“Netflix Tax” in California

By Andrew Nehring

Cities in the Golden State are exploring what they might call a “golden opportunity” to compensate for the loss of tax revenue from declining cable-television subscriptions as more Americans choose video streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.  Read the full story here.

CAGW is the nation’s largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.

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CAGW Names Rep. Tom Rooney May 2017 Porker of the Month

Rep. Rooney is CAGW's May Porker of the Month for his his reckless push to revive earmarks, one of the most corrupt practices in the history of Congress.