U.S. Congressman John Barrow (GA-12) today introduced a bill calling for a 20 percent reduction in funding for the General Services Administration (GSA) to purchase vehicles to add to the federal government's vehicle fleet. The recommendation was part of the Bowles-Simpson plan for deficit reduction unveiled in 2010. The funding reduction will affect all agencies, except those agencies that require vehicles for national security purposes.
"The reality is that we have to cut spending, and the federal government needs to start living within its means just like folks in Georgia do," said Congressman Barrow. "Buying brand new cars each year, that the federal government doesn't need and can't afford, is a waste of hard-earned taxpayer money, and this bill puts an end to that reckless spending."
The federal government spends nearly $4 billion dollars each year to maintain and operate approximately 652,000 vehicles it currently owns. Since 2006, the cost to operate these vehicles has risen 5.4 percent, with the federal government adding over 20,000 vehicles in the same timeframe. According to some estimates, reducing agency's vehicle budgets by 20 percent, to Fiscal Year 2011 levels, will save the federal government approximately $500 million, funds that could be used for deficit reduction.