Chairwoman of the House Republican Conference Rep. [crscore]Cathy McMorris Rodgers[/crscore] introduced a bill Monday aimed to gradually cut federal funding over the course of three years as to phase out unauthorized programs.
The program would be subject to a 10 percent sequester in the first year, followed by a 15 percent cut during the second and third years under the Unauthorized Spending Accountability Act of 2016. The program would be shut down after the third fiscal year.
If the program or agency is reauthorized by the Spending Accountability Commission, established under the bill to review the programs and agencies, the program’s funding would resume in full during the three-year window.
The commission would be required to “submit a sequester and sunset schedule” to Congress, then would conduct a thorough review of mandatory spending.
A January report released by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office showed the government spent $310 billion on expired programs authorized under 256 separate laws for fiscal year 2016.
McMorris Rodgers told The Daily Caller News Foundation the issue is a top priority for congressional Republicans and believes the legislation will receive a broad base of support in both chambers.
“I think people recognize that one of our top priorities is to restore the voice of the people and really address the frustration we hear from a lot of Americans, that they don’t like so many of these agencies and that so many decisions are being made by a top-down government thinking it knows best,” she said. “The House Republicans are developing their agenda and this is one of our top priorities. It’s an idea I think should be a part of restoring the power of the purse and restoring the constitutional role that we have as elected representatives to ensure this type of accountability is taking place.”
The CBO found several of the “zombie programs” have been expired for over a decade.
“The USA Act would force Congress to do its job and conduct better oversight of all government programs. It’s unconscionable that Congress funded 256 unauthorized federal programs at a cost of over $310 billion this year,”Executive Vice President of the National Taxpayers Union Brandon Arnold told TheDCNF. “Several of these programs, like the Legal Services Corporation and the Power Marketing Administrations, haven’t been authorized since Ronald Reagan was President.”
The congresswoman released an eerie video titled “How to Fight Zombie Government Programs,” discussing how the programs, which were set to expire, are feeding off government funds.
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