Browsing: deficit

Deficit reduction, Onion-style

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Tired of hearing about one wonky proposal to avert sequestration after another? Trust us, you’re gonna want to read this one. The Onion yesterday published an eight-point plan to avert the rapidly-approaching fiscal cliff, and its editors are nothing if not confident. The editorial begins by declaring: “Those who reject any part of this plan are not only ignorant, but are also guilty of actively trying to undermine the nation and its government.” Their cuts would be brutal … and unique. The Onion proposes abolishing several agencies (such as the Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency), New Mexico, dams,…

Technology could cut federal deficit by billions, report says

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As Congress and the administration grapple with how best to cut the federal deficit, a group of industry and government leaders are suggesting that information technology be used to reduce that number by billions of dollars. The American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council’s (ACT-IAC) Institute for Innovation on Tuesday released recommendations for the Obama administration to cut the deficit by $220 billion annually through increased use of data analytics and industry best practices. ACT-IAC  is public-private partnership focused on helping government use technology to serve the public. More than 100 volunteers from government and industry provided input for ACT-IAC’s first Quadrennial…

Senate votes down pay freeze

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The Senate earlier today voted down the latest Republican deficit reduction proposal that would have frozen federal pay raises and bonuses. The tax bill amendment, offered by Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., would have also capped federal staffing levels and imposed a 5 percent across-the-board budget cut for all federal agencies except the Veterans Affairs and Defense departments. The amendment was defeated on a 41 – 57 vote. Thune blasted lawmakers for defeating the amendment, which he called “a common sense step toward restoring fiscal sanity.” “The defeat of my amendment was a missed opportunity for Congress to prove they are serious about tackling…

GOP, unions do their usual dance on federal pay freeze

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Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. A leading Republican deficit hawk proposes cutting out federal employees’ 1.4 percent 2011 pay raise, which would represent less than two-tenths of a percent of the annual $1.4 trillion deficit and not even scratch our fiscal troubles. Federal unions holler and decry the effect a pay freeze will have on federal workers, who are — let’s be honest — relatively shielded from the economic troubles facing much of the rest of the nation, such as layoffs. Both sides pull out their own conflicting numbers on the difference between federal and private-sector pay — neither…

Latest postal casualty: wilderness airmail

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With the U.S. Postal Service poised to run out of money by year’s end, it’s had to make some tough calls. It’s cutting management and supervisory positions, encouraging employees to retire early and closing administrative offices. Its latest target? A rural airmail service that provides weekly mail delivery to about 20 addresses scattered across hundreds of square miles of Idaho backcountry. Facing a $6 billion deficit this year, the Postal Service says it can no longer afford to make the deliveries. That’s cold comfort to the residents, of course, who pay extra to get necessities such as food and medicine delivered along…