Agencies that support Congress operating at low capacity

A gull perches on the concrete edge of the Capitol Reflecting Pool as the setting sun illuminates the Capitol building behind on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Dec. 11, 2017. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

From order to disorder, you could say Congress, is in its own league.

Chaos on Capitol Hill has existed long before 2017, but a new report shows there could be a reason Congress continues to fall behind.

It turns out the congressional research service, the congressional budget office and the government accountability office — three agencies designed to support the legislative branch - are floundering.

With a loss of 45% of their combined staffs from 1975 to 2015, according to the Office of Personnel Management.

“We’re doing more with less and that’s okay. I think we can still get our job done,” said Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, in an interview last week.

But will the job get done well?

David Williams, President of the Taxpayers Protection Alliance said probably not.

“We want every watchdog agency to have the proper funds to do their jobs. Whether it’s the inspector general, the GAO, congressional research service, they need to have the people to do their jobs,” Williams said in an interview Friday.

The report also points to staff turnover, a lack of compensation and a lack of investment in technology on the Hill.

But Williams said members of Congress shouldn’t be allowed to point the finger elsewhere.

“Partisan bickering, six-week vacations have nothing to do with staffing. Congress has no one to blame but themselves for their inaction, the 11th-hour spending bill to keep the government operating this is their fault,” Williams said.

Even many people who want smaller government say these support agencies actually save the taxpayers millions of dollars since it’s their job to help weed out government waste. They say fewer resources for them means they may be able to point out the problems but won’t always be able to follow through to make sure the solutions are carried out.

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