Welcome to the Taxpayer's Tab -- the weekly newsletter for up-to-the-minute research from the National Taxpayers Union Foundation's BillTally Project.
Since 1991, NTUF has computed the legislative spending agendas of Members of Congress by analyzing the costs -- and savings -- of the bills that they sponsor and cosponsor. Our goal is to provide you with objective information about what Congress wants to do with your tax dollars in an open and transparent manner.
Each week, NTUF will bring you updates on the week's most and least expensive bills, the ones with the most cosponsors ("the most friended"), and a few bills we've termed Wildcards -- bills that we think you might find interesting.
For more information on the National Taxpayers Union Foundation or the BillTally Project, check out our website and methodology.
Most Expensive Bill of the Week
The Bill: H.R. 6300, State and Local
Spending Will Help Save America Act
Annualized Cost: $200 billion ($400 billion
over two years)
The State and Local Spending
Will Help Save America Act was introduced in late September by Congressman
Dennis Kucinich (OH-10). The bill would authorize $200 billion in FY 2011 and
another $200 billion in FY 2012 in federal funds to supplement state budgets.
payments would be made on a quarterly basis and each state -- including the
District of Columbia and U.S. territories -- would receive funds based on its
Least Expensive Bill of the Week
The Bill: H.R. 5779, Reduce and End
our Deficits Using Commonsense Eliminations (REDUCE) in the Agriculture Program
Annualized Savings: -$627 million
(first year savings)
Foundation has scored another bill sponsored by the Spending Cuts and Deficit
Reduction Working Group. In Issue
12 of The Taxpayer's Tab, the REDUCE in the Defense Programs Act was
highlighted as that week's Least Expensive Bill. Congressman James Himes (CT-4) -- a member of the working
group -- sponsored a spending cut bill targeting farming and forestry programs.
The bill makes a number of cuts to programs that the Working Group calls "duplicative and unnecessary." Programs facing
cuts include health care grants administered by the Department of Agriculture
and subsidies to private logging companies. These cuts would result in a one-time savings of $195
million. NTUF's savings estimate differs from that of the sponsor because one-time savings are accounted for only in the year in which they accrue and not over multiple years as included in the sponsor's estimate.
the bill would reduce commodity payments to wealthy farmers and cut
reimbursement rates to private crop insurers. These program changes would save $2.16 billion over five
The Bill: H.R. 4971, Greening Food
Number of Cosponsors: 68 Congressmen
4971 focuses on local food producers and markets with a $14.757 billion
increase in federal spending over five years. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-9)
sponsored the legislation earlier this year.
Department of Agriculture's Office of Urban Agriculture would address
nutrition-related problems in underserved communities and help lower-income
residents have better access to fresh fruits and vegetables. According to NETWORK, a group supporting
the bill, the legislation would "empower community garden programs, expand
access to nutritious food by better connecting communities with local farmers,
and promote agricultural education in schools." Local farmers' markets would also receive funding to help improve
senior citizen nutrition.
include 67 Democrats and one Republicans in the House.
We Want You!
NTUF is looking for late summer/fall associate policy analysts to participate in our internship program. Associates assist with BillTally research and other policy projects. Academic credit and a stipend are possible. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. To apply visit our internship page. Join us and help keep a tab on Congress!
Information in The Tab is for educational purposes only and is not intended to aid or hinder the passage of any legislation or as a comment on any Member's fitness to serve.