How Does the Federal Government Spend?

Most all of us at one time or another have complained or at least wondered about how the feds spend our hard earned tax money. We’ve all heard irritating stories about the Pentagon spending absurd amounts on mundane objects (here is an old LA Times article from 1986 on the topic of overspending in the Pentagon in particular mentioning a $7,622 coffee maker), pondered how the president spends his vacation time or had concerns about some other use of the public coffers that may be wasteful. After all, we don’t want our money spent frivolously or for some unethical government contractor to take advantage of such a huge, difficult to manage entity as the budget of the United States.

That’s where www.usaspending.gov/  comes in. As billed by the site itself: “USAspending.gov is the publicly accessible, searchable website mandated by the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 to give the American public access to information on how their tax dollars are spent.”

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Masthead

So you can check on this information in multiple ways. As one example, you may see how much money is spent in the state of Tennessee.

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State of Tennessee

It can be broken down in various ways as well. As can be seen here Davidson County receives well more than 1/3 of the just over $40 billion allocated to the state for Fiscal Year 2017, with a figure of $15,351,958,126. The next county, Shelby, receives $1,620,940,881, and is the only other county to receive $1 Billion or more.

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TN County Breakdown

 

 

There are many more ways to look up information beyond state by state breakdown. This site is just waiting for your curious fingers to enter new search terms or click on the numerous links on the site.

FindYouthInfo.gov

http://findyouthinfo.gov/

From the website, “FindYouthInfo.gov is the U.S. government Web site that helps you create, maintain, and strengthen effective youth programs.” One section of the website provides information of different topics that affect youth. Each listing provides the latest resources on the subject.

There is also a “Map My Community” section which provides information on federally supported youth resources in a community. A search can be done by zip code. There are different topics and government departments that allow you to limit the search to just that specific program. Collaboration profiles are also included for non-profits and private agencies.

Private Sector Health Projects Database

www.psp-one.com/section/project

According to the site, this is “a searchable database of over 140 health projects worldwide that work with the private commercial sector. This database is a central repository of the private sector projects in family planning, reproductive health, and HIV/AIDS. It contains a brief description of the project and is searchable by keyword, country, region, and implementing organization.”