Oversight Advances Spending Cuts, Job-Saving Regulatory Moratoriums, and Other Reforms

Published: Apr 26, 2012

WASHINGTON- The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform adopted $83 billion in deficit reduction provisions today. The taxpayer savings were adopted by the Committee to meet the goals of H. Con. Res 112, House Fiscal Year 2013 budget resolution, on a vote of 19-15.

The Committee’s plan directs federal employees to contribute an additional five percent of pay toward their defined benefit pension plan phased-in over five years. Members of Congress will pay an additional 8.5 percent of salary over five years. The legislation also eliminates the FERS special supplement for new hires. Under current law, the taxpayers pick up the cost for “social security” benefits for federal workers who retire before they are eligible to actually receive Social Security.

The Committee adopted an amendment offered by Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, which would allow retiring employees to deposit payments for accrued and annual leave into their Thrift Savings Plan account.

The Committee also adopted the following bills:

H.R. 2008, the Keeping Politics Out of Federal Contracting Act– by a voice vote, which would reaffirm the fundamental principle that federal contracts should be awarded free from political considerations and be based on the best value to the taxpayers. An Obama Administration draft executive order, leaked last year, would force government contractor executives whose companies were seeking to do business with the federal government to disclose to contracting officials donations to advocacy groups as well as to political candidates.  The legislation was introduced by Chairman Issa along with Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., and House Small Business Committee Chairman Sam Graves, R-Mo.




H.R. 4067, a moratorium on “Midnight Rules”, introduced by Rep. Reid Ribble, R-Wisc., on a voice vote. The bill would prohibit federal agencies from proposing or finalizing major “midnight rules” during an outgoing President’s lame-duck period. Major rules are those that have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more; a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions; or significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets. Senator Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., has sponsored companion legislation.

H.R. 4078, the Regulatory Freeze for Jobs Act of 2012, introduced by Rep. Tim Griffin, R-Ark., by a vote of 21-16. The bill would prohibit federal agencies from finalizing major rules or major guidance for a period of two years, or until the unemployment rate reaches 6% or less, whichever occurs first.

H.R. 3609, the Taxpayers Right to Know Act-, by a voice vote, offered by Oversight Subcommittee Chairman James Lankford, R-Okla. Following up on the GAO’s duplicative spending report, the bill would require every agency to identify each of their programs and evaluate the program’s efficiency.  Agencies would then make recommendations to consolidate duplicative and overlapping programs. All agency evaluation information would be posted online. The Office of Management and Budget would also be required to make recommendations to reduce governmentwide duplication.

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