Department of Commerce

Several cost saving ideas

1) On all Automatic Surface Observation Systems across the country are still using incandescent obstruction lights. Solution, replace incandescent bulbs with LED lights; the Federal Aviation Administration has done this with their airfield communication & navigation equipment.

 

2) Phase out wind profiler radar systems. The National Weather Service is currently using several noncommissioned wind profiler radar systems with plans to replace the current systems. Solution, why implement this program when WSR-88D NEXRAD radars already provide the same information and these systems are all over the country?

 

3) Gradually begin to phase out NOAA Weather Radio transmitter sites and commercial portable NOAA Weather Radio receiver program. This is 1970s technology that is not the most dependable or widely distributed means to broadcast weather alerts and warnings (not to mention other issues such as operator errors etc). Solution, phase out paying for thousands of leased phone lines and go to satellite based systems for transmitting weather information from weather forecase office to transmitter site. Next step, start pushing weather broadcasts via cellular phone service. More people use cellular phones and with GPS built-in, a more accurate application can be build and implemented for less money.

 

4) The Department of Commerce offers a $300 annual gym membership reimbursement program. I love to use the gym, but in times of national deficits this is not a mandatory expenditure.

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Idea No. 9445