Your Tax Dollars…Hard at Waste

Report released by Oklahoma Senator reveals millions in wasteful spending including in Minnesota

OK Senator James Lankford (R)

Oklahoma Senator James Lankford (R) wants you to know that your hard earned tax dollars are being wasted.

Federal Fumbles: 100 Ways the Government Has Dropped the Ball, is a report released by Senator Lankford. The study lists $247 Billion in what the report calls a small fraction of wasteful, duplicative and inefficient federal spending.  It also highlights burdensome federal rules and regulations that crush small businesses and cost American consumers billions each year.

Lankford said in a statement, “This ‘Federal Fumbles’ report provides specific examples of wasteful spending and unnecessary regulations that are not in the taxpayer’s best interest, and shows specific solutions for how the federal government can become more efficient.”

Some of the highlights of wasteful spending include a $2 million study on how children don’t like to eat food that’s been sneezed on and spending nearly half-a-million dollars on the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of the medieval era. The report also uncovered that the Federal Government spent $1 billion on hospitals and infrastructure in Palestine.

In Minnesota specifically, the report states that the National Institute of Health (NIH) invested more than $1.5 million to conduct a study on the impact of healthy eating and exercise of immigrants.  On page 100 of the report, the NIH spent the money to improve physical activity and nutrition among immigrant and refugee families in Rochester, Minnesota, arguing that the group’s “health is critical to the future of this country.”

Starting in 2011, the NIH provided $300,000 per year for 2 intervention programs for 160 immigrants to assess health differences between two groups over a two year period. The study was designed to see which group was healthier: the group that spent 2 years of eating healthier and exercising versus those who only did it for one year.  “America is the greatest nation in the world, and it is hard to believe we need one more incentive to attract new immigrants.  It is also difficult to understand why this type of research is either not obvious or open to all Americans.” the report states.

According to the report, the U.S. federal government spent $439 billion more than it took in and that government overspending is routine.  Lankford claims that if Congress were able to balance the budget, keep it balanced and create a yearly surplus of $50 billion, it would take 460 years to pay off our national debt.

The report also introduces the Grant Reform and New Transparency (GRANT) Act, which sets a government-wide standard for transparency on how grant sections are issued and will help to prevent federal duplication.  $617 billion in federal tax dollars were awarded as grants by federal agencies in 2015, and the money was spent with limited oversight and transparency.  The GRANT Act is designed to correct this.

Lankford tells taxpayers that they need to reach out to their congress members by calling, emailing or writing their representatives and demand action to stop the wasteful spending.