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New report examines the fiscal implications of chronic underinvestment in road repair

March 21, 2014 Comments off

New report examines the fiscal implications of chronic underinvestment in road repair
Source: Smart Growth America and Taxpayers for Common Sense

State departments of transportation (DOTs) are spending more money building new roads than maintaining the ones they have—despite the fact that roads are crumbling, financial liabilities are mounting and conditions are not improving for America’s drivers.

Those are the findings of Repair Priorities 2014: Transportation spending strategies to save taxpayer dollars and improve roads, a new report out today from Smart Growth America and Taxpayers for Common Sense. The report examines road conditions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, how much states currently invest in road repair and how much they would need to spend to adequately maintain America’s roads.

Between 2009 and 2011, states spent $20.4 billion each year on road expansion. During that same period, states spent $16.5 billion on road repair—not enough to keep road conditions from declining. From 2008 to 2011, the amount of roads in good condition decreased from 41 percent to 37 percent, while the number in poor condition increased from 17 percent to 21 percent.

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Big Oil Tops $150 Billion in Profits in 2011

March 4, 2012 Comments off

Big Oil Tops $150 Billion in Profits in 2011
Source: Taxpayers for Common Sense

With annual financial reports being released this time of year, the oil and gas industry is looking to continue its decade long trend of being one of the most profitable in the United States. As of February 27, 2012, the top six oil and gas companies have released their 2011 fourth quarter results—and with no surprise, profits continue to boom. The top six oil and gas companies raked in nearly $150 billion in profits last year—an increase of 69% from 2010. Despite another jaw dropping year, Big Oil continues to enjoy billions of dollars in taxpayer-backed subsidies.

Watchdog Groups Identify Nearly $600 Billion in National Security Spending Cuts

July 30, 2011 Comments off

Watchdog Groups Identify Nearly $600 Billion in National Security Spending Cuts
Source: Project on Government Oversight and Taxpayers for Common Sense

The federal government could save $586 billion over the next 10 years by cutting unneeded weapons, reining in out-of-control private contracts, reforming the military health care system and reducing the number of U.S. troops in Europe, under a set of proposed spending cuts identified today by the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) and Taxpayers for Common Sense.

While the Senate’s “Gang of Six” has proposed a substantial cut in defense spending, their plan lacks specifics. The proposals by POGO and Taxpayers for Common Sense provide a detailed blueprint on how to achieve the savings.

The report released by the watchdog groups reduces the deficit by targeting weapons that even the Pentagon says it doesn’t need or want. The plan also singles out the expense of paying private contractors to perform tasks that federal employees could do just as effectively and at a lower cost. Reducing service contracts by 15 percent could save $373 billion over the next 10 years.

The spending cuts targeted by POGO and Taxpayers for Common Sense, include:

  • $300 billion by reducing Department of Defense (DoD) service contracts by 15 percent;
  • $72 billion by reducing non-DoD service contracts by 15 percent;
  • $60 billion through reforms to the DoD’s TRICARE health care system;
  • $44 billion by replacing two of the three F-35 variants with the less expensive F/A-18 E/F’s;
  • $30 billion by withdrawing 20,000 troops from Europe, and
  • $12 billion by not renewing the procurement contract for the V-22 Osprey.

+ Full Proposal

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