Bipartisan Proposal to Terminate the Advanced Earned Income Tax Credit
Saves $1.1 billion over ten years
On July 20th, four Democrat Congressmen launched a working group to focus on deficit reduction. Among the savings put forward by the lawmakers was endorsement of a proposal advocated by the Administration to terminate the Advanced Earned Income Tax Credit (AEITC) because it "has a high error rate and is not widely utilized by eligible taxpayers." Under the program, eligible taxpayers may receive a portion of their EITC throughout the year in their paychecks. A government audit revealed that some 80 percent of recipients did not comply with at least one program requirement; 20 percent had invalid Social Security numbers and thus may not have been eligible for the credit; 40 percent failed to file the annual tax return required to reconcile the credit; and of the 60 percent of recipients who did file a return, two-thirds misreported the amount received. As a result, this program is particularly susceptible to waste, fraud, and abuse.
Yet, again this failed when put up for vote.
New Choices up for vote
Prohibit Mandated Project Labor Union Agreements That Increase Government Construction Costs
Saves: 10 to 20 percent per construction project, totaling hundreds of millions of dollars
In February of 2009, the President issued an Executive Order encouraging the use of "project-labor agreements" on federal construction projects in excess of $25 million. According to the Administration, "A project labor agreement is a pre-hire collective bargaining agreement with one or more labor organizations that establishes the terms and conditions of employment for a specific construction project." Numerous studies indicate that these agreements increase costs by between 10 and 20 percent. Based on information provided by the Administration in terms of the scope of the Executive Order, project labor agreements could be applied to some portion of large construction contracts which in 2008 totaled $31,685,574,596. As a result, increased costs to taxpayers could be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Suspend Federal Land Purchases
Saves $266 million next year and $2.66 billion over ten years
Last year Congress spent $266 million acquiring additional federal lands at the Departments of Interior and Agriculture. This is a 138% increase over the comparable amount of funding just four years ago. Given that the federal government already owns 29% of the land in America and has a multi-billion dollar maintenance backlog to maintain current land holdings, suspending new federal land purchases would permit the government to focus on maintaining existing property while also saving taxpayers millions of dollars a year.
Require Collection of Unpaid Taxes From Federal Employees
Savings of potentially $1 billion
In 2008, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reported that over 97,000 federal employees were delinquent on their federal income taxes, owing a total of $1 billion in unpaid taxes. This includes 1,151 employees who owe $7 million at the Department of Treasury which oversees the IRS. By requiring at a minimum that the IRS to work with federal agencies to withhold a portion of each employee's paycheck who is determined to have a "seriously delinquent tax debt," we can ensure that federal employees are paying their fair share of taxes. Failure to pay required taxes should result in disciplinary actions designed to ensure that the taxpayers are made whole. In addition to collecting back taxes already due, this reform will ensure future unpaid taxes are also collected.
Prohibit Taxpayer Funding for Campaigns in Foreign Countries and Recoup the Misspent Funds
Saves $23 million
Recent Congressional Republican oversight efforts have uncovered that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is spending over $23 million on activities related to ratification of the proposed Kenyan constitution, including campaign activities to specifically encourage a "yes" vote. The constitution, among other things, would gut Kenya's current pro-life laws. Tax dollars should not be used to run political campaigns in foreign countries or to attempt to directly influence the outcome of foreign democratic elections. This proposal would prohibit funding for such activities and recoup funds already spent by reducing the USAID administrative budget by an equal amount.
Eliminate the "Dodd Clinic" Earmark From Obamacare
Savings of $100 million over ten years
Section 10502(a) of the over 2,000 page recently enacted Obamacare government healthcare bill provides $100 million for construction at an unnamed "health care facility." However, the language in health bill is tailored in such a way as to ensure the funding is earmarked for the University of Connecticut. By eliminating this special interest funding, we can protect taxpayers while we work to repeal the entire health care law