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Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriation Act, 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Mr. Chairman, this amendment would reduce the administrative and salaries and expenses accounts in the underlying bill by just 3 percent. It is similar to an amendment that I offered to the Commerce, Justice, and Science appropriations bill just a few weeks ago.

My message today is the same as it was then: we are in a fiscal emergency, and it is imperative that we work to get spending under control here in Washington, D.C.

Over the last 2 years, the House has voted to reduce our own administrative accounts--our Members representational allowances--by over 11 percent. As we all know, this has resulted in pay freezes, and in some cases pay cuts, for a number of our own staff members.

Yet during this same period of time, many agencies have seen reductions which are much lower than those which we have taken here in the House.

Amazingly, some of these Agencies funded under this bill have seen large increases in their administrative accounts. For example, under this bill, the Appalachian Regional Commission would receive a 9 percent increase in its administrative account over the FY11 FY13 period. Likewise, the salaries and the expenses account for the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board would see a 21 percent increase. But if you think those increases are big, think again. This legislation would provide the Department of Energy's departmental administration account with a 64 percent increase over 2 years.

Mr. Chairman, I'm not arguing the merits of any of these Agencies. But during this fiscal crisis, just 3 percent could yield significant savings--nearly $30 million in the case of Agencies funded under this bill.

It's time to tighten our belts. I urge support on my amendment, and I yield back the balance of my time


Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Madam Chairman, my amendment would reduce funding for the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy account by $355 million, with the intention of removing all funding for vehicle technologies. This reduction would be transferred to the spending reduction account.

Madam Chairman, I'm 100 percent supportive of the automobile industry producing more fuel-efficient automobiles if they choose to do so; however, there is simply no good reason that the Federal Government should be subsidizing billion-dollar companies at a time when our Nation is broke.

Over the past few years, we have seen the automobile industry receive an unprecedented amount of government assistance. We've seen an industry bailout, the market-distorting Cash for Clunkers, and many more subsidies all done with little regard for taxpayer money. It's time we begin to reverse this disturbing trend and let the automobile industry succeed or fail on its own merits.

I urge support of my amendment, and I yield back the balance of my time.


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