Tom Carper, U.S. Senator for Delaware

Senator Carper serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. For more information on his work on governmental affairs issues, please visit the committee's website,

As the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, it is a top priority of mine to make sure that the federal government develops a wiser and more effective management strategy. Our budget deficits require us to take a tough and honest look at how we can better manage the scarce resources taxpayers entrust to the federal government and demand that we find ways to make federal agencies both more efficient and more effective.

Since I first became a United States Senator, one of my top priorities has been to identify and eliminate wasteful and fraudulent payments by government agencies. In 2012, I worked with a bipartisan group of Senators to introduce the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Improvement Act. This legislation provides the Administration and agency heads with the tools needed to proactively combat the estimated $108 billion in avoidable errors that federal agencies make each year. Although we have made great strides in curbing wasteful spending in recent years, there is still more we can do to ensure that the scarce resources we put into federal programs are not wasted or misappropriated. From how we invest in information technology (IT), to the weapons we buy for our military, to how we stop fraudulent abuse of Medicare and Medicaid – there’s a lot we could do better. As Ranking Member, I will continue to focus on getting better results from all federal programs by monitoring federal agencies and programs at high risk for waste, fraud, and abuse.

Taxpayers want a federal government that is nimble, responsive, and efficient. That’s why another one of my priorities has been to work with the Administration to streamline bureaucracy to make it work more effectively and cost less. This can be done by reducing Administrative vacancies, making government data more easily accessible, or a variety of other reforms. In order to have an effective and efficient federal government, we must have a robust and well-trained workforce of federal employees. As part of that effort, the federal government must work to recruit and retain a talented federal workforce, improve morale at federal agencies and ensure we have the resources and policies to get the best and brightest working in the federal government.

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee can be an important partner in ensuring that our government achieves better results for less taxpayer money. Both Congress and the Executive branch bear equal responsibility in rooting out waste, fraud and abuse in government programs. Both bear responsibility in ensuring that we measure the performance of programs and reform or end those programs that do not work, or have outlived their usefulness. Both bear responsibility for providing transparency to the public on how our tax dollars are spent. It's my hope that the Congress and the President can continue to work together to make government more efficient and give taxpayers a better bang for their buck.

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