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Money Management the Key to efficient government

Updated on May 17, 2015



Money management has been around for a long time and has been an issue with various levels of government. This includes executive departments and the agencies within them. Those of us who pay taxes want those dollars to be spent not only wisely but to be appropriately managed for efficient operations. It is sad to say that such actions within the federal government do not appear to be in existence. Evidence of this environment can be seen in reports that agencies cannot account for where millions sometimes billions of dollars overall have traceability as to where the funds were applied.

Money management not only applies to departments and agencies but it applies to the halls of Congress. Congress creates and passes legislation along with appropriations to ensure adequate funds are there to complete the objective (s) of each piece of legislation. While there may be some issues with knowing how much taxpayer dollars will be coming into the treasury the money appropriated should not be more than the amount received in the last fiscal year. This would be one way of instilling some money management philosophy within the legislative system. It should not take a constitutional amendment to balance the budget we as individuals and our state governments do this all the time.

It is important when Congress is creating legislation and evaluating the funds necessary to accomplish the objective (s) is available. It is true in some executive departments that unexpected expenses can surface like disaster relief resources associated with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). While there may be other agencies which have similar situations overall there should not be any unexpected expenses and efficiently managing their resources is critical to an agency or department’s success.

It is not rocket science to put it another way for an agency to know where the tax dollars they receive are being or have been spent. The public deserves accountability for the tax dollars any level of government receives but accountability is another aspect which seems to definitely be missing within the federal government and perhaps some state government entities. Today the environment within the federal government seems to be rampant spending. Every piece of legislation or at least most of them require quantity of funds to implement and monitor the mission of each legislative proposal which becomes law.

Congress needs to step up to the plate with regards to legislative proposals and the costs associated with them. Financial accountability with regards to the federal government should involve but does not appear at this point to be the case is associating the legislative need with the mission of the federal government. This includes the specific responsibilities identified in the Constitution and other activities which were not mentioned but are appropriate for the federal government to manage. The word manage with regards to the operations of the federal government seems to not belong in the same sentence. Government departments and agencies have become too large and their scope has been increased so much that the ability to manage is hampered because of their size. This is not the fault of the department or agency but Congress.

Both political parties have been in power in Congress and have chosen to increase the scope of government. The reach of the federal government is rampant and the cost of this reach and the financial accountability is so far out of bounds to sound fiscal responsibility. Managing any activity within the federal government seems impossible given the latest news reports.

Money management involves not only accounting for the dollars received but whether the budget should have included the funds for various activities in the first place. Inefficiency within any level of government needs to be brought under control through the applicable elected officials. It is not just the federal government which has a problem with money management as any government entity should embrace this philosophy. Sound fiscal discipline does exist within some government entities but they are the exception rather than the rule. It should be the rule rather than the exception.


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