The Department of Energy oversees nuclear weapons sites, runs electric utilities, and subsidizes conventional and alternative fuels.
The department will spend $38 billion in 2010, or about $320 for every U.S. household. It employs 16,000 workers directly and oversees about 100,000 contract workers.
The Department of Defense oversees a vast array of people and assets at home and abroad, but we could improve security and reduce costs with a more restrained military strategy.
The department will spend about $721 billion in fiscal 2011, or $6,110 for every U.S. household.
The Department of Transportation subsidizes and regulates highways, airports, air traffic control, urban transit, and passenger rail.
The department will spend $91 billion in 2010, or about $770 for every U.S. household. It employs 58,000 workers and operates 85 different subsidy programs.
Last week I discussed
the Obama administration’s decision to redistribute federal high-speed rail money rejected by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. I noted that “Florida taxpayers were spared their state’s share of maintaining the line, but they’re still going to be forced to help foot the bill for passenger-rail projects in other states.” My underlying point was that the states should be allowed to make their own transportation decisions with their own money. Read more