CCAGW Urges Opposition to H.R. 2440 | Council For Citizens Against Government Waste

CCAGW Urges Opposition to H.R. 2440

October 28, 2019

U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Representative,

On behalf of the more than one million members and supporters of the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW), I urge you to reject H.R. 2440, the Full Utilization of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Act.

H.R. 2440, introduced by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), would exempt the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) from the caps put in place by the Budget Control Act (BCA) and provide up to $10 billion in cap-exempt spending for the HMTF. This legislation will likely drain the $9 billion surplus currently in the HMTF.

While there is bipartisan support for H.R. 2440, it sets a dangerous precedent by exempting government spending from the caps simply because that spending is popular. Currently, government spending categories exempted from the caps are limited to emergency and overseas contingency operations (OCO) spending, healthcare fraud and abuse control, continuing disability reviews and redetermination, disaster relief, and wildfire suppression. Supporters of H.R. 2440 have failed to explain why HMTF belongs in the same category.

As government trust funds such as the Social Security and Medicare Part A fund are facing insolvency, members of Congress should not be passing legislation that drains one of the healthiest taxpayer-backed trust funds in America. Passing H.R. 2440 will only signal to other special interests that they too should seek additional exemptions for their priorities.

The BCA caps are scheduled to expire at the end of 2021. Until then, Congress should not be exempting special interests from the caps. Taxpayers want and expect the government to be responsible stewards of their money. Again, I urge you to reject this legislation. All votes on H.R. 2440 will be among those considered in CCAGW’s 2019 Congressional Ratings.

Sincerely,

Tom Schatz
President, CCAGW

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