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Congress Gets The Spirit Of The Paperwork Reduction Act

On Capitol Hill they've greased the skids for those who want to belly up to the porkbarrel. Here's a off the cuff comparison of the paperwork required to receive a Congressional earmark and for various other activities.

Food Stamps Application (Virginia): 18 pages
Cub Scout Application Form: 7 pages
Application for a Social Security Card: 5 pages
FY2007 Earmark Application Form from Sen. Murkowski (Alaska): 3 pages

Apparently it's easier to get a multi-million dollar, taxpayer-funded earmark than it is to become a Cub Scout...

Related: TTLB's Porkbusters Hall Of Shame

Comments (6)

Murkowski's form is really ... (Below threshold)

Murkowski's form is really only about 2 1/2 pages.

Oh please, The cubscout app... (Below threshold)

Oh please, The cubscout applications are two pages of actual data and they are not full pages. The pages are actually like 8 by 5 1/2".

The last page is medical information which gets kept by the cubpack for reference incase of emergencies.

It takes about 5 minutes to fill them out.

Boy Scout troops usually reqiore the kids have a class 1 medical form on file with the troop.

I get the jist of the post. I am just being a little nitpicky.

The other commenters said i... (Below threshold)
King Charles III:

The other commenters said it - comparing the Cub Scout form to Senator Murkowski's form is apples to oranges. Yes, they're forms, and yes, they have a certain number of pages. But if you'd actually read the forms instead of getting your Libertarian panties in a twist, you would have seen that the Cub Scout form takes about 5 minutes to fill out while Senator Murkowski's form is a great deal more involved. That kind of makes your whole point collapse in on itself, doesn't it?
Disingenuous is the word I'm looking for.

Was Stalin quoted as saying... (Below threshold)

Was Stalin quoted as saying that if you kill one man, you a dirty murderer,whereas if you kill millions you are a hero of the state. He ought to know.

I think the same applies to money, getting 100$ is a lot grubbier than getting 100 million.

I am always interested when... (Below threshold)
Richard Belzer:

I am always interested when people cite the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), a law hardly anyone knows about. Federal agencies must obtain approval of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to obtain information from 10 or more persons. See http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/inforeg/infocoll.html. The agency's supporting statement to OMB must include a "burden estimate," such as the "5 minutes" stated by other posters regarding the Cub Scout application (which of course is not covered by PRA). However, the Food Stamp application IS covered by PRA, and Virginia's form appears to be illegal because it lacks an OMB cleaRance number and burden statement, and it implements a federal program. The Social Security Card application form has this information.

The "burden estimate" for Sen. Murkowski's form (which is exempt from PRA, of course) depends on a number of factors, including: (a) Does it need to be completed in full? (b) Does it need to be completed accurately; and (c) Does it need to compete with other applications?

I am not sure I have ever s... (Below threshold)

I am not sure I have ever seen so much discussion on the topic of filling out forms in my life (not counting the Federal Tax Code).






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