Did You Get Your Money’s Worth From Congress Last Week?
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The House and Senate were in session last week, but failed to reach a deal on the fiscal cliff. The Senate did not even take up a bill on the issue and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) couldn’t gather enough votes in his chamber to extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for all taxpayers earning less than $1 million. The House did pass a bill to allow the sequester spending cuts to go forward and the final version of the fiscal year 2013 defense authorization bill, which authorizes $633 billion in military spending next year.
Congress could return this week, but both chambers are currently are in recess for the holiday.
What you paid
Last week taxpayers spent roughly $100 million on Congress.
Salaries of Members of Congress and their allowances/week:
Speaker of the House: $223,500/52 = $4,299
House and Senate Majority and Minority Leaders: ($193,400/52) x 4 = $14,877
Other Representatives and Senators: ($174,000/52) x 530 = $1,773,462
Average weekly budget for all House offices: ($1,446,009/52) x 435 = $2,096,421
Average weekly budget for all Senate offices: ($3,409,093/52) x 100 = $6,555,958
Non-salary money allocated for Congress: $4.656 billion/52 = $89,538,462
What you got
In addition to the votes noted above, the House voted to pass 14 bills whose costs are largely unknown:
- S. 925, Mt. Andrea Lawrence Designation Act. COST: None
- H.R. 6443, To designate the facility of the Department of Veterans Affairs located at 9800 West Commercial Boulevard in Sunrise, Florida as the William Bill Kling VA Clinic. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 3197, To name the Department of Veterans Affairs medical center in Spokane, Washington as the Mann-Grandstaff Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 6016, Government Employee Accountability Act. COST: Unknown
- S. 3564, Public Interest Declassification Board Reauthorization Act. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 6655, Protect our Kids Act. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 1845, To provide for a study on issues relating to access to intravenous immune globulin (IVIG) for Medicare beneficiaries in all care settings and a demonstration project to examine the benefits of providing coverage and payment for items and services necessary to administer IVIG in the home. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 6672, To reauthorize certain programs under the Public Health Service Act and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act with respect to public health security and all-hazards preparedness and response. COST: Unknown
- S. 3642, Theft of Trade Secrets Clarification Act. COST: Unknown.
- H.R. 6621, To correct and improve certain provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act and title 35, United States Code. COST: Unknown
- H.R. 3783, An act to provide for a comprehensive strategy to counter Iran’s growing hostile presence and activity in the Western Hemisphere, and for other purposes. COST: $1 million over 5 years
- H.R. 6504, Small Business Investment Company Modernization Act. COST: Unknown
- S. 3193, To make technical corrections to the legal description of certain land to be held in trust for the Barona Band of Mission Indians. COST: None
- H.R. 4606, To authorize the issuance of right-of-way permits for natural gas pipelines in Glacier National Park. COST: None
The Senate passed the final version of the fiscal year 2013 defense authorization bill.