White House online budget database: your taxes at work
"Information on earmarks will no longer be hidden deep in the pages of a federal budget bill, but just a few clicks away. This legislation will give the American people a new tool to hold their government accountable for spending decisions. When those decisions are made in broad daylight, they will be wiser and they will be more restrained."
- President George Bush
Washington, D.C. - President Bush said Tuesday that Americans will now be able to "Google their tax dollars," as he signed a law to create an online database for tracking about $1 trillion in government spending on grants and contracts.
The law is aimed preventing wasteful spending by opening the federal budget to greater scrutiny. The information is already available, but the Web site would make it easier for those who aren't experts on the process to see how taxpayer dollars are being spent.
Senate leaders had tried to pass the bill in early August, but Rep. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, and Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., blocked passage by lodging secret "holds" on the bill. The bloggers tracked down those responsible for the delay and the senators let the bill advance under the pressure.