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The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground. —THOMAS JEFFERSON, 1788

Gov’t claims sequestration will hurt federal agency (despite fact it closed last year)

federal agency closedIt appears there is something to the president’s warning that the sky will fall on Friday if sequestration is allowed to kick in. The automatic budget cuts will be so severe that they will even affect government agencies that no longer exist.

Reason.com’s Mike Riggs writes:

If you want a thorough agency-by-agency rundown of the budget cuts sequestration would deliver, the Office of Management and Budget has you covered. In compliance with The Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012, the OMB sent a detailed report to Congress in September 2012. But there’s a small problem with the report: One of the cuts it warns against would affect an agency that no longer exists — and didn’t exist when the OMB sent its report to congress.

The first line item on page 121 of the OMB’s September 2012 report says that under sequestration the National Drug Intelligence Center would lose $2 million of its $20 million budget. While that’s slightly more than 8.2 percent (rounding error or scare tactic?), the bigger problem is that the National Drug Intelligence Center shuttered its doors on June 15, 2012 –three months before the OMB issued its report to Congress.

Riggs asks whether other such errors might be found in the OMB report. A related question is whether the administration is overstating its dire predictions.

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Howard Portnoy has written for HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, and The George Espenlaub Show.

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