In honor of the tax day tea parties and Bob Beckel's statement that he has not heard a single tea party person indicate how spending would be cut or the deficit reduced (I guess Bob's gone deaf) I am reposting this blog from December.
While on vacation I was discussing politics with my father, which I always do, and we came up with a Congressional reform bill. This bill was written by two process improvement specialists but we would love your input on it. If you like what we have come up with, please pass it along. If you have any suggestions on anything that needs to be added or changed, please leave a comment to that effect. I will be sending this bill to my Congressmen and encourage you to do the same.
To the purpose of Congressional reform, reduction of federal debt and elimination of wasteful, and unnecessary, spending the following provisions must be implemented.
Section 1: The Allocation of Dollars for the Federal Budget.
There will be no automatic budget increases for any department. All departments, excepting the department of defense, will initially receive a 20% budget reduction from their previous year’s allowance. There will be an additional 5% decrease each year for the next 5 years.
Any department or area under the Executive Branch which performs a function designated to the Legislative Branch by the Constitution will be immediately defunded.
The White House budget is included in the above reductions. All Czarships will be immediately terminated and any federal dollars allocated to those Czarships will be returned to the treasurey to reduce the debt.
No money designated for one purpose may be directed to another.
No funding request may be added to a bill less than 4 business days prior to the vote. Also, all funding requests must be directly related to the primary objective of the bill.
Any funding bill, or any line added to a funding bill, must be for the benefit all of citizens. Any item within a bill which directs federal funds to a single state or a pair of states is prohibited in all cases except for national disaster relief. However, the theory of man-made global warming does not now, nor will it ever, fall under the category of natural disaster. Any funding to address damage resulting from an act of war or a terrorist attack is to be considered for the benefit of all citizenry even if the damage is limited to a single state.
To enforce the aforementioned stipulations, there must be executive authority for a line item veto.
Section 2: The Reduction of the Size of the Federal Government
All government agencies created in the last 3 years will be immediately eliminated. There will be an additional reduction of 2 agencies per year for the next 20 years.
One agency may be combined with another agency to meet this reduction. However, in the event of combined agencies, their budget becomes 75% of the combined dollars.
No new government agency may be created without a two-thirds positive majority vote in both houses. The creation of the agency can only be raised for a vote when the first 5 years of funding has been appropriated and the method by which it will be funded must be included in the bill for the agency’s creation.
Section 3: Compensation for Federal Employees Including Congress and the White House
Congress may not exempt themselves from any law, mandate, regulation or legislation of any kind which they impose on the general citizenry.
Travel will be paid out of federal funds only when it directly relates to the people’s business. Family members may join Congress, the vice president or the president upon a business excursion, but no public funds may used for the expenses of the family members. Any exception to this policy must receive a unanimous vote from the Senate appropriations committee.
Congress will no longer be able to vote themselves a pay raise or an increase in their discretionary spending allotment. Their pay and discretionary spending allowance will be directly tied to the GDP of the nation. Their pay will be based on their performance and the growth of the organization they lead just as it is done in the private sector. Each year their pay will be evaluated against the GDP. If the GDP increased, their pay will raise at half the rate of increase. Should the GDP decrease, their pay will be reduced by twice the rate of decrease. For example, if GDP raises 6%, then Congress will receive a 3% increase in pay and their discretionary spending allowance; if GDP drops by 6% then Congress will receive a 12% reduction in pay and discretionary spending.
The pay received by federal employees may not exceed the comparable pay in the private sector by more than 10%.
All federal employees will be held to an increase of the lesser of 2% or the cost of living increase until the federal debt is paid. This excludes those whose current pay exceeds 10% of the comparable pay in the private sector as they will receive no pay raise until the private sector rises to their level.
Section 4: Elimination of the Federal Debt
All excess revenue either not designated to a department or not utilized by a department will be applied directly to the federal debt. The utilization of these funds for any other purpose will require a two-thirds majority vote in both houses.
Section 5: Taxation Protection
No individual making an income may be exempted from paying income taxes. The tax rate will be immediately reduced to 11% across the board for all individuals and 12% for corporations. This has been shown to generate the same revenue as the current method.
Section 6: Term Limits
A Constitutional amendment will be ratified which limits the Congressional terms to 3 in the House of Representatives and 2 in the Senate. Additionally, after meeting the limit in one house, they may not run for another position for at least 2 years.
I believe that these provisions would force our government to become more efficient and effective. Please let me know your thoughts and ideas.