NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Are These Projects Necessary?

October 9, 1997

President Clinton used his line-item veto powers this week to strike nearly $300 million in unnecessary spending from the $9 million military construction bill. Budget hawks wish they could convince him to eliminate what they see as equally egregious spending projects in other appropriations bills.

Here are a few they cite:

  • A $1.4 million intermodal center for the Lake Tahoe resort, $2 million for bus facilities in wealthy Palm Beach, $2 million for a New Orleans street car project, $31.8 million for a tourist light rail project in Orlando, and $2.3 million to help Southeast Michigan deal with ice and snow -- all of which appear in the Transportation Department's appropriations bill.
  • Folks at the Agriculture Department are scheduled to get $100,000 for hops research, the same for Vermont maple syrup research, the same for Vidalia onions in Georgia, $1.2 million for potato research, $500,000 for honey bee research, and $3.5 million for wood utilization research.
  • Whole agencies could be eliminated from the Commerce, Justice and State departments' appropriations critics claim -- including the waste-ridden Economic Development Administration, the Small Business Administration's Minority Business Development Agency, and the $200 million Advanced Technology Program, which is seen as corporate welfare.

Source: Donald Lambro, "Tougher Tests for the Veto Pen," Washington Times, October 9, 1997.


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