Carper Bill to Allow Taxpayers to “Google” Government Spending Signed Into Law

Legislation Will Create Searchable Database to Track Federal Dollars

WASHINGTON (September 26, 2006) – President Bush today signed into law legislation, co-sponsored by Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., that would create a “Google-like” search engine and database to track almost $1 trillion in federal grants, contracts, earmarks, and loans. The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (S. 2590), which Carper originally introduced with Sens. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., Barack Obama, D-Ill., and John McCain, R-Ariz., passed the House and Senate by overwhelming margins this month. The law would require the White House Office of Management and Budget to create a free online, searchable system where the public can find information on most public expenditures, such as congressional earmarks, agency grants and federal contracts. The system would NOT include employee pay and benefits or any national-security-classified information. “Today is a good day for good government. This law will allow taxpayers to see where their money is going and hold the federal government accountable for its performance,” said Carper, senior Democrat on the Senate Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management. “At a time when federal agencies are making nearly $50 billion in improper payments each year and Congress continues to approve questionable projects requested by lawmakers, we need to shed some much-needed light on federal spending and allow the public to decide for themselves whether taxpayer dollars are being well-managed.” More than 100 organizations ranging from Americans for Prosperity and Taxpayers for Common Sense to Greenpeace endorsed S. 2590. Dozens of editorial boards across the country, including the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Chicago Sun-Times and the Wilmington News-Journal, also praised the legislation.