OMB Director Orszag: find 5% to cut

From “OMB must sell Congress on budget cuts” by Jason Miller on

“The Office of Management and Budget’s instruction to agencies to cut 5 percent of their budget by reducing or terminating poor performing or low priority programs is nothing new.

“The White House made the same request last year and found that Congress accepted 60 percent of its suggestions. In fact, most of the recent administrations have asked agencies to figure out how to tighten their belts, finding limited success with lawmaking agreeing to about 15-to-20 percent of the recommendations.

“However, what is different this time is the environment in which OMB is working and the idea of letting agencies keep a portion of their savings.


“OMB director Peter Orszag, who described the guidance during a speech in Washington at the Center for American Progress, says program duplication is rampant across the government.

“Under this new guidance, agencies by Sept. 13 must submit to OMB justification for cutting or reducing discretionary programs and subprograms that either are under performing or do not meet the agency’s mission. This request follows on the White House’s plan to freeze non-homeland security and defense discretionary funding for 2010, 2011 and 2012.

I played highlights of the speech on the show today. You can learn more about the event here, and you can watch the entire presentation below.