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Rice, Barr Reintroduce Bipartisan Resolution Requiring Comptroller General to Present to Congress on American Economy

Fiscal State of the Nation Resolution would require the Comptroller General to present the Financial Report of the United States to an open, joint hearing of the House and Senate Budget Committees

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Washington, July 30, 2021 | Stuart Malec (2022255516) | comments

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representatives Kathleen Rice (NY-04) and Andy Barr (KY-06) today reintroduced the Fiscal State of the Nation Resolution, which would require the Comptroller General to present the Financial Report of the United States to a joint hearing of the House and Senate Budget Committees. The resolution has been cosponsored by 80 bipartisan Members of Congress. 

Under the resolution, all Members of Congress in both the House and Senate would be invited to attend the Comptroller General’s presentation. The presentation by a nonpartisan government official would provide Members with a sober and clear-eyed assessment of our nation’s financial health, which would enhance Members’ understanding of the federal budget and deficit, and it would help them make more informed decisions with respect to the U.S. economy. The joint hearing would take place within forty-five business days of issuance of the audited Financial Report to ensure lawmakers receive the information in an accurate and timely manner.  

“Regardless of policy differences, both Democrats and Republicans in Congress have a shared commitment to ensure long-term fiscal health of the U.S. economy,” said Rep. Kathleen Rice. “And after a year that required record government spending to combat this unprecedented public health crisis, increasing our collective understanding of how debt and deficits affect the economy is more important than ever. This resolution will ensure lawmakers are able to receive the timely and nonpartisan data they need to make informed legislative decisions.” 

“The explosion in federal debt and historic inflation numbers underscore the need for Congress to rein in deficit spending,” said U.S. Representative Andy Barr (KY-06). “Requiring the Comptroller General to present an open report to Congress on our fiscal health will provide the information and transparency needed to tackle this crisis effectively.” 

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA) applauded Rice and Barr for introducing their bipartisan resolution.  

“Debt is already larger than the economy, and it will continue to escalate toward a new record going forward. Lawmakers must begin paying more attention to our fiscal outlook,” said Maya MacGuineas, President of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. “Representatives Kathleen Rice (D-NY) and Andy Barr (R-KY) are right to draw attention to the issue with their Fiscal State of the Nation resolution. An annual hearing by the Senate and House Budget Committees featuring the Comptroller General would shine some much-needed light on our unsustainable budget situation, rather than sweeping it under the carpet. We appreciate and support this effort.” 

“It is important that our legislative leaders have a full and unbiased understanding of our nation’s financial health,” said AICPA President and CEO, Barry C. Melancon, CPA, CGMA. “The AICPA believes that this reporting can be a valuable tool for our legislators in understanding the long-term economic impact of current and/or future policies and we strongly support this legislation.”  

Companion legislation was also introduced in the U.S. Senate, led by Senators Krysten Sinema (D-AZ) and Joni Ernst (R-IA).  

“Taking a serious, nonpartisan look at America’s economic health allows us to properly address our national debt while we grow our economy and protect Arizonans’ earned retirement benefits,” said Senator Sinema, a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. 

The full text of the resolution is available here. 

 

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