January 15, 2009
Congressman Adam Smith (WA-9) authored a letter sent to Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Boehner and committee leadership requesting transparency and accountability requirements for all federal funding in the upcoming economic stimulus package. Specifically, the letter called for requirements to track and measure the impact of federal dollars, ensure spending efficacy and thorough reporting, and make certain that projects eligible for funding through the package have the widest possible exposure to qualified contractors.
“It is critical that Congress improve transparency and accountability in all federal spending, and particularly in this new package that will inject hundreds of billions of dollars into our economy,” said Congressman Adam Smith. “Technologies exist to track the disbursement and measure the impacts of economic stimulus funds, and we should make sure to use these critical tools. Doing so will not only increase Congressional oversight and taxpayer confidence, but also help eliminate waste and fraud.”
The letter urged House and committee leadership to include three major provisions to the upcoming economic stimulus package:
1) Track in detail how stimulus funds are spent by state, county and municipal entities, with project visibility from start to finish, and compliance reporting, while placing as little burden as possible on the recipient entities;
2) Report the resulting economic impacts down to the local level so the effectiveness of funding can be measured and future funding can be allocated with maximum impact;
3) Provide qualified businesses across the United States a simple method to access federally-funded stimulus projects as soon as they are let out for bid, at no cost to businesses.
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