Sen. Lee Introduces Agency Accountability Act

February 3, 2017

WASHINGTON – Senator Lee (R-UT) introduced the “Agency Accountability Act of 2017” Friday, a bill that would direct most fines, fees, and other unappropriated proceeds to the Treasury, making them subject to the appropriations process.
“Over time, Congress has given away their power to raise funds to the executive, allowing federal agencies to collect fines, fees, and other revenues outside of the normal appropriations process,” Sen. Lee said. “While a significant portion of these fees and funds are used to offset appropriations, agencies have been known to use some of the fees to self-fund programs that have not necessarily been approved by Congress. This bill is an important step towards increasing transparency, simply by bringing all funds back where they belong – under congressional oversight and authority.”
Rep. Gary Palmer, who introduced a companion bill in the House, added, “For too long Congress has granted federal agencies the authority to collect fines, fees and other revenues outside of their appropriated funds with little to no Congressional oversight on how the monies are spent. Congress’ power of the purse is exclusive and absolute and we must begin reclaiming our Article I authority. I am proud to team up with my colleague Senator Mike Lee on this important piece of legislation in both the House and Senate. "
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has cosponsored the bill in the Senate and the bill has been endorsed by Americans for Limited Government, Americans for Tax Reform, FreedomWorks, and R Street Institute.