With all this talk about the need to cut budgets it seems like there must be some areas of agreement between Republicans and Democrats. One of those areas ought to be selling off unused/unneeded properties. But according to this article that is even an issue of contention. The current congress just can’t seem to be able to look at the common good.
There is a small town about twenty miles west of us that contains a post office. In reality that is the only currently occupied building in the entire town. There used to be a small diner that opened for a few hours a day but that shut down a couple of years ago. Now all that is there is about twenty houses in various states of decay. This town is about ten miles from another but somewhat larger town. So, why is the post office still open there? We are probably paying at least two full-time employees to sit in the building and deliver a few pieces of mail a day.
This is one of those areas where I am convinced that private business actually does have an advantage over public controlled ones. They can make these types of decisions more easily. Just having fewer people involved in the process is a big advantage. I know the post office is a somewhat independent company but it is still mostly controlled by the federal government. Another example of wasting taxes is the armory in our small town. It has been vacant for more than five years but has never been occupied or offered for sale to the public. I imagine there are at least a couple of employees who still maintain the building.
The above article says that the Obama administration has identified more than 12,000 such building that if liquidated could save or bring in $15 billion in the next three years. This seems like a no-brainer to me. But one of the reason they are having problems is a catch-22. Given all the budget cuts already made they can’t afford to move the people or more likely equipment out of the building! So we can’t afford to save money because we can’t afford to spend money in order to save it? So the two sides will likely continue to argue about this. And of course there is the house representative who doesn’t want to reduce the federal presence in his district.
I’m just a simple guy but surely there is a way out of this silly dilemma. But what do I know…