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Every Dollar

An admission: Efficiency isn’t the juiciest topic to blog about. It’s not easy to write about a dollar saved here, and a dollar saved there, and then expect to keep you interested and awake until the end of the post. I imagine most people hear the words “government spending” and begin to roll their eyes, envisioning boxes of over-priced hammers and rooms of underutilized computers.

When Secretary Napolitano was appointed, she made it her mission to do a top-down review of how this department spends your money. As the Governor of Arizona, she did something similar, saving Arizona almost $1 billion. And that’s in a state where the annual budget is about $10 billion.

So, from existing government contracts, to software, to office space, we are taking a detailed look at every dollar we use at the department. The goal is to engage in smart spending. We began the Efficiency Review less than three months ago, and have already identified savings throughout the department. Here’s a snapshot of the new initiatives we hear about each week:
  • TSA: $433,000 in software savings

  • USCG: $1.7 million in contract consolidation savings

  • USCIS: $165,000 in equipment savings

  • CBP will achieve a 25 percent reduction in energy costs at their new Border Patrol Sector Station in El Paso using "green" construction methods.

  • ICE: $61,000 in savings by utilizing government vehicles instead of private rentals and more than $40,000 annually by eliminating subscriptions to publications available on-line.

The Secretary just delivered a message to department employees, thanking them for their work and continued commitment in making this a leaner, more efficient, and thereby effective department. We’ll bring you more updates on the review as it happens.

Published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C.
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