12/09/11 Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) Wednesday cosponsored the Taxpayers Right to Know Act, legislation introduced by Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) that would require every federal agency to provide taxpayers with an annual report card for each of its programs.
“As we consider how to address our nation’s fiscal crisis, everything must be on the table,” said Coats. “Shedding light on wasteful and duplicative programs is a way to identify how taxpayer dollars can be saved. We need to determine what is essential, what can be pared down and what needs to be eliminated.”
Under this bill, each government program would need to include the following in its report card: a description of the government program, the total administrative costs of the program and expenditures for services, the number of beneficiaries who receive assistance from the program and the number of staff who administers the program.
This information would be updated annually and posted on-line, along with recommendations from the agency to consolidate duplicative and overlapping programs, eliminate waste and inefficiency and terminate lower priority, outdated and unnecessary programs.
The Government Accountability Office released a report earlier this year said, “reducing or eliminating duplication, overlap or fragmentation could potentially save billions of taxpayer dollars annually and help agencies provide more efficient and effective services.”
In addition to Coburn and Coats, co-sponsors include Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Senators Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), Mark Begich (D-Alaska), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), John Boozman (R-Ark.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), David Vitter (R-La.), Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.).