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2006 Annual Report

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2006 Annual Report

Dear fellow taxpayer:
As taxpayers, we are shareholders in the federal government. Therefore, we are entitled to know how much money the government collects from us and how our money is spent. That is why I am sending you this 2006 Annual Report, which summarizes the U.S. government's finances.

It is important to consider a number of points as you read this year's report.
• Tax cuts have fueled incredible economic growth. Businesses have invested tax savings in purchasing new equipment and hiring more workers. The tax cuts have also allowed individual taxpayers to increase saving and investing. This economic activity has increased tax revenue from businesses by 27.2 percent and individuals by 12.6 percent.

• Job creation is at an all-time high. The unemployment rate recently dipped to its lowest level in five and a half years. Nearly 7 million jobs have been created since the recession ended in June 2003. In Wisconsin, the unemployment rate stands at 4.6 percent. Nationally, it is 4.5 percent.

• The deficit is dropping faster than expected. At the beginning of the year, the federal deficit was projected to be $423 billion dollars. Because of higher-than-expected tax revenues, the deficit was cut by 41 percent to $248 billion. At the same time, the stock market has hit record levels, which helps boost the growth of pension and retirement funds.

• Government spending is still out of control. The federal government is spending more money than it collects in taxes. The current practice of pork-barrel spending must end, and our budget laws must be reformed to bring more transparency and accountability to the way our tax dollars are spent. As the newly elected Ranking Member of the Budget Committee, I look forward to having a more influential role in
bringing fiscal responsibility to Washington.

• The biggest tax increase in history is looming. The tax cuts that spurred the incredible economic growth we have experienced will expire in 2010 unless Congress takes action to make them permanent. Families and small business owners will be hit with a $4 trillion tax increase if these tax cuts are not extended.

• Global competition is a fight we must win. We can compete with emerging countries, such as China and India, without reducing U.S. workers' wages. Instead, by lowering the cost of doing business here at home, we can keep U.S. jobs from going overseas. In addition to keeping taxes low, steps must be taken to control health-care and energy costs, as well as regulatory and litigation expenses. I hope you find this Annual Report helpful. As always, please feel free to contact me if I can be of assistance to you in dealing with the federal government. I am always happy to respond and be of service to you.

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