The culture in the federal government is for organizations to spend their full budget allocation over fears that future budgets will be decreased if they have money left over. The administration should promote fiscal responsibility by rewarding organizations that are able to operate without spending their full allotment. The best way to do this is to create a monetary incentive for returning funds. This could be done at the agency level, then internally at the organizational level. For example, if DOT has a budget of $1B and the agency as a whole returns $200M, then the agency would receive x percent( for this example let's say 1% or $2M) to distribute in "fiscal responsibility" bonuses. The agency would then determine which organizations were responsible for returning unused dollars and distribute the bonuses accordingly. This could be based on a number of factors; year-over-year savings, percent of budget dollars returned compared to the organizations overall budget, etc. Instead of looking for ways to spend money, organizations would be looking to cut costs, streamline programs and improve efficiency in order to earn a bonus at the end of the year.
Idea No. 5112