Big Red Car here. Kind of a gray and gloomy day in the ATX but big doings nonetheless.
The President is in Dallas for the opening of the George W Bush President Museum and in Waco for the West explosion memorial. A high point and a low point.
These big happenings sometimes obscure the elegant simplicity of handling day to day affairs — such as doing the normal and mundane things that business folks do all the time — controlling expenditures. Cutting costs.
Now, this is a message of hope and promise and praise.
The House of Representatives Has Found a Way to Cut Its Operating Expenses by About 20% over the Last Three Years
The story is in the details, the boring details. The gory details?
Let’s dig into that just a bit says the Big Red Car. Calm down, Big Red Car.
It cost about $1,500,000,000 to run the House of Representatives in FY 2010. Today it is projected it will cost about $1,200,000,000 — a $300,000,000 or 20% savings. Projected through FY 2013.
This is a step in the right direction.
Take that step
The math is a bit tricky because we are comparing years in which the numbers are finalized and a year — FY 2013 — which is still in progress. So the savings are not yet in the can.
1. In 2011, they saved $58,000,000 v FY 2010.
2. In 2012, they saved $143,000,000 v FY 2011.
3. In 2013, they project saving $205,000,000 v FY 2012.
The cumulative savings is approximately $400,000,000 even better than the $300,000,000 indicated above.
Wow, Big Red Car! Who is making these savings?
Credit Speaker Boehner
The guy holding the checkbook is the Speaker of the House — John Boehner. He has the whip hand on spending money.
So this very tan supposedly good golfer is also a cost cutting professional? Huh? Big Red Car, is that right?
Yes, says the Big Red Car. The Speaker is a good financial manager who has managed the expenditures of the House down by over 20% in the last three years.
Well played, Speaker Boehner!
How did the House do it?
Well, the House did not do any real heavy lifting. They just used “normal” business sense. Here are some actual things they did:
1. One Congresswoman cancelled a cleaning service at her home office location to save money. Now, the staff does it themselves.
2. Another Congressman saves on travel expenses by directing his staff to fly through BWI (Baltimore Washington International) to take advantage of lower flight costs as compared to Washington National (Reagan) and Dulles.
3. The Speaker has curtailed and cancelled and streamlined events of all kinds including cancelling his traditional Saint Patrick’s Day party.
These things are not rocket science. They are simple little cuts whose cumulative impact begins to build and result in meaningful cuts.
WTF, Big Red Car? That looks pretty damn easy, no? Why can’t everyone in government take a lead from this?
Would that be “leading by example”, Big Red Car?
Yes, it would, ya’ll — sayeth the Big Red Car.