The Campaign Spot

Spared by the Sequester: $2 Billion in Unspent Stimulus Funds

According to Recovery.gov, “Of the $804 billion awarded as of June 30, 2012, more than $2 billion appropriated by Congress expired — meaning the appropriations were not awarded or used within specified time frames. Agencies might also have adjusted an award amount with funds being returned to the agency. The expired funds are kept on an agency’s books for five years to cover invoices for the projects; at the end of the five years, the funds are returned to the Treasury.”

Why are they kept on the agency’s books for five years? It has been nearly four. If they haven’t spent that money on “shovel-ready” projects by now, how likely are they to spend it in the coming year? What, are they waiting for an invitation from one of the sequester-spared White House calligraphers?

Any chance we can get at those $2 billion to mitigate some of the sequester cuts that the public finds more irritating?

After all, it takes less than a million to cover the costs of White House tours. Certainly, we could take some of that $2 billion and use it to make sure the White House Easter Egg roll isn’t canceled.

By the way, the worst offender was the Department of Agriculture, with $764 million left unspent as of June 30. The Department of Energy left $241 million in stimulus funds unspent; the Department of Defense left $241 million, and the Department of Transportation spent $220 million.

If the Easter Egg roll is canceled, will the announcement be sent out by the White House calligraphers?

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