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This story encapsulates everything that is wrong with your government today — reckless, unaccountable spending of tax dollars, with people getting paid (again, with our tax dollars) to do…well…apparently nothing.
Back in 1999, Congress passes a law authorizing a memorial in Washington D.C. of former President Dwight D. Eisenhower – just south of the National Mall.
The Eisenhower Memorial Committee was formed. The Commission consists of 12 members, four members of the House of Representatives, four Senators, and four private citizens appointed by the President (there are currently only 3 of the 4 private citizens on the commission).
The Commission was given $62 million for the design and construction of the memorial. Plus an additional $2 million/year for the salaries of the commission. Is it any wonder that it took them 10 years to select a design? They were getting paid to do…nothing.
And today, 14 years later, not a single shovel-full of dirt has been turned. But the initial $62 million has been spent (in addition to the $28 million in salaries).
In Fiscal 2012, the commission received roughly $32 million. For fiscal 2013, the commission had requested an additional $59.8 million, the bulk of which would go toward “construction costs.”
Add this up…let me get my calculator out: $62m + $32m + $59.8m + $28m = $181.8m
In what world — other than D.C. — does it cost nearly $200m and more than 15 years to put up a statue in a park?
Thankfully, there is a move from Rep. Rob Bishop (R-UT) to defund the entire boondoggle, and the Eisenhower Memorial Commission would not receive any new funds in fiscal 2013 under a draft bill unveiled Tuesday from the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies.
ep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, has introduced legislation to scrap the design and eliminate $100 million in funding. A hearing will be held by the House Natural Resources Committee Tuesday to look at what went wrong.
“Before we provide additional funding, we need an accurate and full account where funds have been appropriated,” Bishop’s spokeswoman Melissa Subbotin tells Whispers. “We don’t have an accurate account of how $62 million was spent.”
Notwithstanding the requested $59m for Fiscal 2013, the Eisenhower Memorial Commission has already been given $122m dollars of our money. And they have absolutely nothing to show for it.
Well, other than their own fat wallets and cushy do-nothing jobs on the tax payer teat.
But hey, let’s cut tuition assistance for active duty soldiers and shut the White House down to touring school children. Just make sure these old men keep getting paid to not build a memorial.
The entire thing should be scrapped. And people should be in jail for stealing money from the tax payers.
They could have built 122 $1-million dollar homes with that money. Or 813 modest $150K homes and just given them away to needy American families. Or veterans wounded who were permanently and completely disabled in combat.