Sen. Jacky Rosen endorses bill to curb wasteful government spending

FILE - Sen. Jacky Rosen, D-Nev., speaks to media after a Senate Democratic policy luncheon, Oct. 17, 2023, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Stephanie Scarbrough)

By Casey Harrison

May 23, 2024

Rosen told The Nevadan her office has returned nearly $1.9 million to date in unspent operating funds back to the US Treasury Department since first joining Congress in 2017.

Nevada US Sen. Jacky Rosen announced she is supporting new legislation aimed at eliminating frivolous spending in the federal government — and touted her office’s own financial savvy in the process.

Rosen, a Democrat, on Thursday signed onto the Identifying and Eliminating Wasteful Programs Act, which was introduced in March by Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH). If enacted, the bill would require each federal agency to compile a list of “unnecessary” programs and also require the President to include the list of programs in the annual budget submitted to Congress.

In addition to her support for the bill, Rosen’s office also told The Nevadan it has returned nearly $1.9 million in unspent funds from her office’s operating budget back to the US Department of the Treasury during her tenure in Washington. Rosen served one term in the US House beginning in 2017, and was elected to her first Senate term in 2019.

RELATED: Rosen bill seeks to lower prescription drug copays for seniors

“Nevadans work hard for every paycheck, and they expect the federal government to use their tax dollars efficiently and effectively,” Rosen said in a statement. “I’ve made it a personal priority to root out waste, fraud, and abuse in federal spending and lead by example on fiscal responsibility, including by returning unused funds from my office back to the Treasury Department.”

According to the bill’s language, agencies would be directed to draft a list of all “unnecessary, defunct, or unnecessarily duplicative federal programs.” Officials would also be mandated to report whether another agency could administer said program more effectively, or if the program could operate more efficiently if it were consolidated with other programs or activities.

Further, agencies could submit to Congress any recommendations for statutory changes that could eliminate or consolidate programs identified on the cull list.

Along with Hassan, the bill was initially cosponsored by Republican Mike Braun of Indiana. It was referred to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, which Rosen sits on, and passed unanimously. It’s unclear which committee might consider the bill next.

Officials say the bill would change how the federal government currently reviews different ways to reduce or eliminate overlap within its agencies, and because of that, would likely not be fully implemented until 2028. But officials aren’t able to gauge exactly how much it could save the government, as the total savings would be determined after identifying which programs would be cut.

  • Casey Harrison

    Casey Harrison is political correspondent for The Nevadan. Previously, he covered politics and the Oakland Athletics' relocation to Southern Nevada for the Las Vegas Sun, and before that, was a digital producer at The Detroit News. Casey graduated from Michigan State University in 2019.

CATEGORIES: NATIONAL POLITICS

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