The lavish and often frivolous spending of taxpayer money by our Federal government is well documented. After all, if $175 million being spent through Medicare on penis-pumps isn’t proof, what is? However, even in the furthest reaches of the ever expanding Federal bureaucracy, examples can be found of wasteful spending on projects that have little or nothing to do with Americans. Despite 61% of Americans saying the Federal government spends too much on foreign aid, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has taken upon itself the duty of awarding tax dollars to a city in Mexico for “used oil collection.”
Under the bi-national U.S.-Mexico Environmental Program: Border 2020, the EPA announced yesterday it was awarding $231,633 to the city of Nogales, Sonora, Mexico and several Mexican non-profits for border environmental projects. The city of Nogales was given $16,508 to expand its used oil recycling program. Nogales, Mexico, which borders Nogales, Arizona, is considered by the U.S. government as “one of the most violent cities in Mexico” with “police corruption.” Despite this information, the EPA also gave two Nogales, Mexico-based non-profits $116,625 to monitor Nogales’ air emissions and develop a 16-hour seminar “on ways to handle and reduce metals and cyanide discharges affecting the Nogales International Wastewater Treatment Plant.” The $63,015 awarded for that seminar seems to be a lucrative deal considering its only being used for one treatment plant. One also has to wonder how much of these grants are going to end up in the hands of corrupt government officials and cartels.
Another $98,500 was given to a non-profit in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico to conduct trash cleanup and plant native plants along the Tijuana River, of which only 5 out of its 120 mile length actually flows in the U.S. Ensenada is another troubled city, which is experiencing financial collapse and increasing homicide numbers.
While tiny in relation to the trillions spent annually by our Federal government, the awards given by the EPA to these foreign entities show increasing disconnect between the EPA and Americans. Priority was given to programs, like the used oil collection in Mexico, that will most likely have zero effect on improving the lives of U.S. citizens, and the several hundred thousand in taxpayer dollars could have been better spent repairing our own infrastructure.