160! – We have 160 Federal Programs That Deal With Housing
posted at 8:58 am on September 22, 2012 by Matt Vespa
Sen. Jim DeMint’s (R-SC) senior communications advisor and speechwriter, Amanda Carpenter, who was recently a columnist for The Washington Times, penned an interesting post on the senator’s page, the Pickpocket, concerning how many federal programs deal with housing. A whopping 160 federal programs is “how many the Government Accountability Office tallied in a recent report that noted, ‘fiscal realities raise questions about the efficiency of multiple housing programs and activities across federal agencies with similar goals, products, and sometimes parallel delivery systems.”
The post, which Carpenter wrote on September 20, also reported that:
…HUD runs the majority of the programs, 91. The United States Department of Agriculture, which also administers farming aid and the nation’s food stamp program, offers 18 different types of housing assistance as well. The Internal Revenue Service has 14 programs. The Department of Treasury offers 8 programs; the Department of Veterans Affairs 7; the Department of Labor 2; Federal Home Loan Banks 3.
The rest of the activities are run through a number of organizations, such as the Department of Interior, the Federal Reserve System, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, Farmer Mac, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, to name a few.
If President Obama had truly wanted to consolidate wasteful government programs, he sure had the chance. Especially when it comes to housing. He just never took it.
GAO recommended that the government begin taking action to consolidate programs at HUD, USDA, and Treasury, a goal completely compatible the Single Family Housing Task Force that the Obama Administration announced in February 2011.
Carpenter noted that this finding has amounted to little more than a press release. However, it’s another episode in the annals of government inefficiency. For a minute – I thought that this could be the foundation for a good movie, but I forgot that it’s already been made.