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Congressman Steve Russell

Representing the 5th District of Oklahoma

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Congressman Russell Releases Waste Watch No. 7

June 12, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DCToday, Congressman Steve Russell (OK-5) released the latest edition of his Waste Watch series. Waste Watch No. 7 is the Education Edition, identifying 10 examples of wasteful government spending and programs in education that wasted $74 billion in taxpayer dollars.

In the Education Edition, Congressman Russell highlights how $55.7 billion in “indirect costs” has been included in National Science Foundation grants awarded to higher education institutions since 2011. Indirect costs are what grant recipients charge the government to accept government money. Other examples include how Harvard researchers were awarded a $3 million National Institutes of Health grant to study if people were able to smell an unpleasant odor in their urine after eating asparagus; and the U. S. Department of Agriculture has awarded $4.9 million a year since 2014 for an initiative that attempted to promote healthy eating choices by having students on college campuses dress up as fruits and vegetables.

“It is my hope that the items in Waste Watch No. 7 can create the motivation to protect taxpayers and assist in educating America’s children with the resources available,” said Congressman Russell. “For my part, I have already introduced, or will be introducing, multiple bills to address many of the items listed in this edition. It is not enough to point out the problems. We must work together to fix them so that we can make our nation stronger. Education is vital to our children and our future.”

Congressman Russell has introduced nine cost cutting bills this Congress, which if enacted would save the taxpayer $17.5 billion. His legislation has saved $4 billion thus far, and all seven editions of Waste Watch highlight a total of more than $300 billion in wasteful government spending.