The Government and Catfish

Eric Eisenhammer

You won’t believe the fishy way Congress wants to spend $170 million!

With a Federal deficit projected to exceed $600 billion this year, national taxpayer organizations are calling on Congress to take action to kill a costly and unnecessary catfish inspection program.

This unnecessary program requires the USDA to inspect catfish – something the FDA already does. It was originally passed by the Senate in 2008 without a hearing, debate or vote. In fact, the program was not even a bill – it was simply inserted into the 2008 Farm Bill Conference Report with no discussion.

Since 2008, $20 million has been spent on this wasteful program without a single fish being inspected.

The Government Accounting Office (GAO) has reported to Congress that the program is at high risk for waste, fraud, and abuse and has repeatedly recommended its repeal. Repealing the program, according to the GAO, would save taxpayers $170 million over the next decade, while still ensuring the safety of catfish, which would continue to be inspected by the FDA like other seafood.

That’s why respected national taxpayer organizations such as Citizens Against Government Waste, National Taxpayers Union, and Taxpayers Protection Alliance are urging Congress to take immediate action to repeal the program.

Unfortunately, Congress may not vote on the issue. If Congress doesn’t vote, bureaucrats will get a blank check to reel in millions more taxpayer dollars.

Citizens who care about ending government waste can make a difference by contacting their Congressional representative and telling them to support an end to the wasteful USDA catfish inspection bureaucracy.