Mr. ROE of Tennessee. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
The text of the amendment is as follows:
Amendment No. 25 offered by Mr. Roe of Tennessee:
Page 38, line 13, after the dollar amount, insert ``(reduced by $97,400,000)''.
The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 552, the gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. Roe) and a Member opposed each will control 5 minutes.
The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Tennessee.
Mr. HODES. Mr. Chairman, I rise in support of the amendment I have offered, amendment No. 98.
I begin by congratulating Chairman Mollohan and the ranking member on all of their important work on this legislation, and I thank the Rules Committee for making this amendment in order.
Mr. Chairman, currently once taxpayer dollars have been appropriated by Congress to grant accounts, there is no accountability required of those funds.
My amendment would fix this problem and make sure taxpayer dollars are accounted for after we have appropriated those moneys.
In an August 2008 report on grants management, the GAO recommended that the Office of Management and Budget report annually on expired undisbursed grant accounts, but unfortunately no action has been taken on this recommendation, and taxpayer dollars are sitting unused in these accounts.
My amendment is similar to what was required in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. My amendment ensures that there is clear oversight of taxpayer dollars. The amendment requires oversight and accountability of expired undisbursed grant accounts. The amendment would instruct all executive departments and independent agencies to track undisbursed balances in expired grant accounts and report the results to the Office of Management and Budget. This will help lower the national deficit because
my amendment also requires the reports to identify which accounts could be returned to the United States Treasury.
Now the group Citizens Against Government Waste has advocated similar policies. Most recently they advocated rescinding funds earmarked by Congress for the Federal Transit Administration that remain unobligated after 3 years. With so many families struggling in this tough economy, we must invest wisely to help our constituents and to be vigilant with taxpayer dollars. We need to ensure there is strong oversight and accountability once taxpayer dollars are appropriated. This amendment is a critical
step in keeping track of our dollars once they've gone out the door. I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support this fiscally responsible amendment.
Mr. MOLLOHAN. I thank the gentleman for his contribution to the bill. It is a real one, and we are pleased to accept the amendment, Mr. Chairman.