President Trump issued his first budget proposal today for FY 2018. He provided a budget that tracks directly with his campaign promise to put “America First” by eliminating wasteful government spending and reigning in our $21 trillion debt.
Trump’s proposed cuts fall into 3 broad categories:
- Duplicative services provided by other governmental agencies or programs
- Services best delivered by states and localities
- Services that could survive on private funding or endowments
The Daily Wire provided a list of the 11 agencies President Trump proposed cutting that the Left is most likely to howl about. These 11 agencies account for approximately $1.7 billion in proposed cuts for 2018.
National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities. The arts and humanities are predominately funded through private donations and private foundation endowments. For example, in 2011 NEA and NEH received $13.1 billion in private funding compared to $292 million in federal government funding. President Trump believes that’s $292 million the government can save, and private funding can pick up the slack.
Corporation for Public Broadcasting. CPB is the agency that funds NPR and PBS at the rate of approximately $485 million per year. PBS is perhaps best known for Sesame Street and Downton Abbey. With the tremendous success of NPR and PBS, the President predicts both can find private foundation or other commercial funding to supplement their budget.
Legal Services Corporation. LSC was designed as an agency to provide legal services to poor individuals. In fact, the LSC “focuses “on lawsuits on behalf of leftist causes” and is ” rife with wasteful spending.” President Trump’s budget cuts out this agency’s $375 million annual budget.
U.S. Trade and Development Agency. The function of this agency was to help develop trade with other countries. This function is duplicated by several other governmental agencies. Cutting this agency would result in $594 million over 10 years.
Woodrow Wilson International Program for Scholars. This program provides scholarships in humanities and social services. The program costs approximately $11 million per year. There are many private endowments that could step up to provide these types of scholarships.
Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation. This agency monitors “Neighborworks” programs that provide affordable housing in several areas. The function of this agency overlaps with HUD. The duplication can be cut and save $175 million per year.
Denali Commission. This is a quintessential example of a “pet project.” The late Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK) formed this commission in 1998 to provide infrastructure for Native Americans. During Stevens lifetime, huge earmarks were funneled into this commission. In 2013, the Inspector General recommended abolishing the commission; however, President Obama kept the commission around to use as a way to “combat climate change.” This is $14 million in unnecessary spending.
U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. This council coordinates with 20 departments and agencies to develop policies to solve homelessness. Clearly, the function is duplicated in many other government agencies, so here’s another $4 million that can be saved.
Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board. This board investigates chemical accidents and develops preventive measures to avoid them. It obviously overlaps with OSHA, EPA, and NTSB. It’s elimination will save $11 million a year.
Overseas Private Investment Corporation. This dates back to the Nixon administration and the early days of globalism. It was originally designed to promote and encourage private investment in developing countries. Today there are many private businesses that facilitate investment in developing countries. This program is simply no longer needed, and it’s elimination will save $63 million per year.
Institute of Museum and Library Services. This agency provides funding to the nation’s libraries and museums. While these are indeed worthwhile expenditures, President Trump believes this is a function best served by states and local governments. Trump’s philosophy is in line with reducing federal government and returning functions back to states and local governments. Eliminating this at the federal level will save $231 million per year.