The EPA has offered $30,000 in prize money for videos on environmental issues in the past few years, but the contests have a pair of Congressional chafing over what they call wasteful spending--and they've entered the contest themselves to fight it.
Furthermore, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) said in a statement that she was "appaled [sic]" that the EPA administrator Lisa Jackson told Congress in a hearing she was unaware of the spending.
So Blackburn and Rep. Pete Olson (R-Texas) submitted their own video to one of the contests, touting citizen participation in the regulatory process. The video is shot in the U.S. Capitol and plugged on Blackburn's Congressional website.
If the video--mostly a series of statements by the two politicians--wins the EPA "Rulemaking Matters!" contest, the pair promise to return the prize money to the U.S. Treasury.
"Congressman Blackburn's office has identified six separate video contests initated [sic] since 2009 offering prizes of more than $30,000," her office said in a press release.
"In the great scheme of things, $30,000 may not seem like much, but Congress trusts that the executive agencies will be good stewards of every taxpayer dollar. Clearly Administrator Jackson is not," Blackburn said in the release. "To claim ignorance of one small contest and it's [sic] $2,500 prize is one thing; but to be ignorant of six contests involving tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars is negligence pure and simple. Her agency is throwing money away hand over fist and I am appaled [sic] that she is ignorant of it."
"Since neither Administrator Jackson or the President have responded to my request to end this wasteful spending, I have only one immediate recourse; enter the contest, win it, and return the prize money to the treasury myself. I am greatful [sic] that my friend and colleague, Pete Olson, has joined me in this important project."
Their video submission directs viewers to www.regulations.gov, where they can participate in Executive Branch rulemaking processes. The pair decry "silly over-regulation" and say that an early version of a carbon production rule would have affected even large churches.
The video is here:
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