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Addicted to Paper

July 8, 2008 - by Donny Shaw

OMB Watch posted today about this behind-the-scenes decision made by Congress:

>CQ reports ($) that Congress intends to reverse OMB’s decision to stop issuing printed budgets to various government offices.
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>>The committee report accompanying the fiscal 2009 Financial Services appropriations bill, which includes funds for White House operations, instructs OMB to send paper copies of the budget to Capitol Hill next year.
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>>"Committees and Members’ offices frequently rely on the printed budget as one of many tools to analyze the president’s proposals," the report reads.
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>>The report also complains that the administration’s decision “appeared to be a matter of shifting costs to the legislative branch from the executive branch” by requiring congressional offices to buy their own copies of the president’s budget.
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>OMB has responded by saying that printing the budget documents is wasteful — about 480 trees are felled each year to print the volumes and that printing is simply unnecessary when the documents are available online.

By the way, if you have any interest in fiscal policy at the federal level (and you should), OMB Watch’s Budget Blog is an absolute must read. They’ve also got really great blogs covering the federal regulatory process and all kinds of issues affecting non-profits, not to mention all the reports and articles they publish every week on current regulatory issues and policy debates.

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