Letter of Support for Rep. Pompeo's EDA Elimination Act, H.R. 887
Dear Representative Pompeo:
On behalf of more than two million Americans for Prosperity activists in all 50 states, I write in strong support of the Economic Development Administration (EDA) Elimination Act, H.R. 887. Your bill would end this wasteful agency, which has come to embody the dubious practice of picking winners and losers in the economy.
Since it began in 1965, the EDA has expanded far beyond its original ostensible goal of providing development grants in regions facing severe economic distress. Now, politicians use it as a tool to dole out federal dollars to their favorite few. For example, the agency sent $611,000 to Bismarck, North Dakota to start up a welding program at a local technical college. The city boats a 2.6 percent unemployment rate, a third of the national average; it’s in no such economic distress.
The EDA has also shown ineptitude in keeping track of its resources. According to the EDA Inspector General, 29% of grant money had been wasted as a result of “various violations of EDA grant requirements such as financial accounting irregularities, conflict of interest, and improper procurement procedures.” Americans deserve to have their hard-earned tax dollars spent wisely, not wastefully.
Additionally, the EDA is duplicative of other government programs at the federal and state level. With government spending growing out of control, Congress should look to for ways to cut redundancy.
If Congress were serious about creating jobs and growing the economy, then it would leave it to market forces in the private sector. Like other state-driven economic development programs, the EDA has a terrible track record. According to repeated reports from the Government Accountability Office, the EDA programs routinely fail to deliver on the jobs and economic activity that they promise.
Americans for Prosperity is proud to support the EDA Elimination Act, H.R. 887, and similar measures to stop the federal government from picking winners and losers in the economy. I urge your colleagues to support this important legislation, and I look forward to working with you in the future.
Director of Policy
Americans for Prosperity