Senate Governmental Affairs Committee Seeks Stimulus Accountability

Broadband Stimulus, NTIA March 8th, 2009

, Reporter-Researcher,

WASHINGTON, March 8, 2009 – Senators on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Thursday weighed the need to distribute federal stimulus fund urgently against the desire to ensure that monies are well-spent.

“We understand that speed is important if the stimulus package is to succeed, but we must not repeat the kind of mistakes that occurred in support of Iraqi reconstruction projects or in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina where money was rushed out the door with little accountability an billions wasted,” said Committee Chairman Joseph Lieberman, Ind.- Conn.

Lieberman said that the web site would “provide transparency by posting information about spending, including grants, contracts, and all oversight activities, so that any American will be able to report on waste, fraud or abuse when they see it.”

Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, concurred, adding: “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provides almost $790 billion and we must do everything in our power to ensure that money is spent wisely, especially considering that the bill will add more than $1.1 trillion to the national debt over 10 years.”

Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director Robert Nabors said that for the fiscal stimulus law to have to have its desired effect, funds must reach recipients quickly. “It is essential that funds be spent wisely at all levels of government, and in a way that maintains the confidence of the public.”

“ received 3,000 hits per second the moment it was launched, and has received over 150 million hits since February 17,” Nabors said. “As funds make their way to projects, we anticipate that the web site will be a valuable resource for tracking their use.”

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, argued that accountability activities be decentralized from the federal to the state levels for efficiency and also so as to utilize local potential.

Broadband Breakfast Club

March Meeting: Broadband Competition: Do We Have It, and How Do We Get More of It? presents the March meeting of the Broadband Breakfast Club at Old Ebbitt Grill on Tuesday, March 10, 2009, at 8 a.m. Because of the Commerce Department/Agriculture Department/FCC Public Meeting on broadband stimulus from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., the Broadband Breakfast Club will adjourn at 9:30 a.m.

  • NEW! – James Baller, President of Baller Herbst Law Group, will provide a brief summary of the progress of the U.S. Broadband Coalition
  • Art Brodsky, Communication Director, Public Knowledge
  • Kathleen Ham, Vice President, Federal Regulatory, T-Mobile USA
  • Brent Olson, Assistant Vice President, Public Policy, AT&T
  • Emmett O’Keefe, Director, Federal Public Policy,
  • Scott Wallsten, Vice President for Research and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

Webcasts of the Broadband Breakfast Club Produced in Partnership with:

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