Federal Agencies On A ‘Use It Or Lose It’ Spending Spree

As a federal government shutdown looms, and the national debt is about to hit $17 trillion, federal agencies have quite literally been on a “use it or lose it” spending spree.

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This past week, the Department of Veterans Affairs bought $562,000 worth of artwork.

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In a single day, the Agriculture Department spent $144,000 on toner cartridges.

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And, in a single purchase, the Coast Guard spent $178,000 on “Cubicle Furniture Rehab.”

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This string of big-ticket purchases was an unmistakable sign: It was “use it or lose it” season again in Washington.

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All week, while Congress fought over next year’s budget, federal workers were immersed in a separate frantic drama. They were trying to spend the rest of this year’s budget before it is too late.

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The reason for their haste is a system set up by Congress that, in many cases, requires agencies to spend all their allotted funds by Sept. 30.

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If they don’t, the money becomes worthless to them on Oct. 1. And — even worse — if they fail to spend the money now, Congress could dock their funding in future years. The incentive, as always, is to spend.

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So they spent. It was the return of one of Washington’s oldest bad habits: a blitz of expensive decisions, made by agencies with little incentive to save.

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Read the whole thing. It’s disgusting. But Nancy Pelosi tells us the “cupboard is bare.”

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Cross posted from The Lonely Conservative

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One Pingback/Trackback

  • http://findalismonkeyinthemiddle.blogspot.com/ findalis

    The VA buys art but the average vet gets nothing. Priorities are screwed up.

  • http://proof-proofpositive.blogspot.com/ proof

    Unfortunately,, it’s not just the Feds with that mentality. That mentality is in every city, county and school district across America that I have observed. We need to spend all the money in this year’s budget, they say, because otherwise they’ll cut our budget and we might really need it next year and won’t have it!

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