Q&A on the News

Q: Which programs is Jon Ossoff referring to when he states, in his campaign ads, that there are $16 billion in duplicate federal programs?

—David A. Manecke, ​Mableton

A: Ossoff, a Democrat who is in a June 20 runoff with Republican Karen Handel for Georgia's 6th Congressional District seat, is referring to redundant programs he believes could be cut with immediate savings to the taxpayer.

Ossoff chose these programs, totalling $16 billion in savings, from a 2016 report by the Government Accountability Office that recommended measures totalling $125 billion in savings and new revenue, Ossoff spokesperson Amy Mesner told Q&A on the News. The largest cut Ossoff recommends would be the consolidation of federal data centers, totalling $5.4 billion, followed by the Strategic Sourcing program at the Department of Defense, totaling $4 billion. Next is the defense department's joint basing program, totaling $2.3 billion.

Other steps to rectify duplicate programs include providing better oversight of Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services spending (savings of up to $2.2 billion), ensuring better management of oil and gas on federal lands ($1.7 billion in savings) and consolidating mobile communications ($388 million), according to the list provided by Mesner.

Fast Copy News Service wrote this column; Will Robinson contributed. Do you have a question? We’ll try to get the answer. Call 404-222-2002 or email q&a@ajc.com (include name, phone and city).