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Fish Hatchery Project: 'Worst Waste of the Year'

OKLAHOMA, US - Among examples cited in Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburns new report targeting $1.3 billion in wasteful federal spending is funding for a new visitors center at the Neosho National Fish Hatchery.

Coburn, an Oklahoma Republican, is noted for his fierce criticism of earmarks for special projects and other federal spending practices, writes John Ford of Neosho Daily News. According to the news association, Coburn made the 49-page report in his role as the ranking member of the Senate Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management.

The fish hatchery was noted in Coburn’s 49-page report, titled “2008: Worst Waste of the Year,” because $2.8 million was allocated for the project after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service faced a $2.5 billion shortfall in 2007, the report item indicated.

“In 2007, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service faced a $2.5 billion shortfall, forcing the agency to leave 200 national refuges unstaffed and to implement a plan to lay off 565 employees by 2009,” the report read, citing a March 2007 AP report. “In a sign of how fast budget priorities can change in only one year, the Fish and Wildlife Service set aside $2.8 million in 2008 to construct a visitor’s center for the National Fish Hatchery in Neosho, Mo.

the Fish Site Editor

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