President Obama Seeks to Stop ‘Unnecessary Printing,’ Spending on Swag
The four finalists are:
- Matthew Ritsko, a NASA employee from Maryland, who suggested the creation of a tool “lending library” to avoid duplicative purchases of expensive tools;
- Eileen Hearty, a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) employee from Colorado, who suggested that it’s unnecessary to travel to inspect superior-rated properties each and every year;
- Kevin Korzenieski, a Treasury employee in DC, who suggested that we stop purchasing U.S. Code books for all new attorneys given the availability of the information online; and
- Faith Stanfield, a Social Security Administration (SSA) employee from Ohio, who suggested SSA stop printing and mailing OASIS magazine—which currently is distributed to nearly 90,000 SSA employees—and simply make it available online.
Within 45 days, agencies will develop plans to reduce combined costs in the following areas to 20 percent below Fiscal Year 2010 levels by Fiscal Year 2013.
1) Reduce Spending on Travel and Conferences: The Executive Order directs agencies to decrease travel and conference-related spending. Increasingly, travel will be limited to circumstances where the activity can only be performed away from the employee’s primary office (e.g., a diplomatic mission or enforcement inspection).
2) Cut Duplicative and Unnecessary Employee Information Technology Devices: Some federal employees are issued more devices (e.g. cell phones, smartphones, laptops, tablet personal computers) than they need to fulfill their duties. In other cases, IT devices are purchased, but go unused. The Executive Order directs each agency to limit the number of devices issued to employees and establish new policies to ensure they are not paying for IT equipment that isn’t being used.
3) End Unnecessary Printing and Put It Online: In the digital age, it is frequently unnecessary to spend money on printed documents in addition to making information available online for the public. The Executive Order directs agencies to provide written information electronically and limit the production of hard copy documents. Examples of steps currently being taken are: