Issa Asks 17 Federal Agencies to ID Alternatives to Sequestration Spending Cuts

March 2, 2013 11:15 AM
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House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) has asked federal agencies to identify unnecessary or wasteful programs within their agency that could be eliminated as an alternative to the spending cuts mandated by sequestration.

“We cannot avert sequestration without a plan to end the undisciplined and unsustainable federal spending that resulted in the sequester in the first place,” Issa said a letter sent to the acting heads of 17 federal agencies. “Raising taxes on the American people for a second time this year is not the solution to sequestration,” the letter states.

“It is time for the federal government to eliminate wasteful and duplicative programs, in addition to making reductions in non-essential agency programs,” Issa continued. “The President agrees. He cited cutting government spending on ‘wasteful programs that don’t work’ as part of his preferred alternative to the sequester. I am writing to request your assistance in identifying such programs.

The letter cites the hundreds of recommendations of wasteful or duplicative spending that the Committee has received from inspectors general as examples of cuts that could be implemented in the short term to meet the required $85 billion in spending reductions.

The Committee is holding the first in a series of hearings on implementing more recommendations made by inspectors general on Tuesday, March 5th at 10:00 a.m. The hearing will focus on reducing waste and improving efficiency at the Department of Education and the Department of Transportation and will be streaming online at

The letters were sent to the following agencies:

  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Department of Commerce
  • Department of Defense
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • U.S. Department of Energy
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
  • Department of Homeland Security
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Department of the Interior
  • U.S. Department of Justice
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • U.S. Small Business Administration
  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Department of Transportation
  • Department of the Treasury
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

© 2021 Ralph R. Smith. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from Ralph R. Smith.


About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources. Follow Ralph on Twitter: @RalphSmith47