Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 79)

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future.

On May 11, 2011,  I emailed to this above address and I got this email back from Senator Pryor’s office:

Please note, this is not a monitored email account. Due to the sheer volume of correspondence I receive, I ask that constituents please contact me via my website with any responses or additional concerns. If you would like a specific reply to your message, please visit http://pryor.senate.gov/contact. This system ensures that I will continue to keep Arkansas First by allowing me to better organize the thousands of emails I get from Arkansans each week and ensuring that I have all the information I need to respond to your particular communication in timely manner.  I appreciate you writing. I always welcome your input and suggestions. Please do not hesitate to contact me on any issue of concern to you in the future.

Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself:

The government’s own auditors, as well as outside watchdog groups, have recommended specific reforms to:
  • Reduce food stamp overpayments (annual net losses: $600 million, mandatory);25
  • Verify parent incomes for school lunches (up to $120 million, mandatory);
  • Improve eligibility verification and tracking of student loan recipients (at least $1 billion, mandatory);
  • Prevent states from using accounting tricks to secure extra Medicaid funds (several billion dollars, mandatory);
  • Combat fuel tax fraud ($1 billion, discretionary);
  • Stop veterans program overpayments ($800 million, mandatory/ discretionary);
  • Collect $3 billion in outstanding debt owed to the Department of Veterans Affairs;
  • Stop Medicare overpayments ($12.3 billion, mandatory);
  • Reform Medicare so that it no longer overpays for prescription drugs and medical supplies ($2,900 million, mandatory);
  • Recover the $7 billion owed by Medicare contractors; and
  • Reform the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to stop overpayments ($9 billion, mandatory).

This is how bad it is getting:

  • Anti-poverty spending has surged 89 percent faster than inflation since 2000. Nearly half of this increase occurred in the past two years. President Bush became the first President to spend 3 percent of GDP on anti-poverty programs, and President Obama has already pushed it above 4 percent of GDP. State and local governments spend an additional 2 percent of GDP on these programs.
  • Since 2000, Medicaid and Food Stamp rolls have expanded by nearly 20 million. Average benefit levels have grown faster than the inflation rate.
  • Program success should be measured by reduced government dependency, not increased spending.
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