Jurassic pork: Earmarks are alive and well despite the ban in Congress

“Like the cataclysmic event that killed off the dinosaurs, Washington politicians declared pork to be extinct five years ago when an earmark moratorium was enacted,” Flake writes in the introduction to the report. “But something has survived.”

“Fossilized within the federal budget, these projects continue to cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars,” he wrote. “Many have even outlasted the terms of the politicians who created them.”

The 54-page report documents numerous examples of projects that continue to receive funding since the earmark ban took effect in 2011.

Though Flake makes numerous comparisons to dinosaurs in the report, none come as close to Congress’s funding of “Dino-buses.”

The “VelociRFTA,” a Bus Rapid Transit system in Colorado first received an $810,000 earmark in fiscal year 2010, prior to the ban. Nevertheless, the Department of Transportation (DOT) continued funding though its “New Starts” program, receiving $36 million in federal assistance since.