President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Congress have sent a very strong, clear message to the American people: Every dollar spent through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will be accounted for. I couldn’t agree more.
This money will be spent by the book. No shortcuts. No boondoggles. And full transparency.
At the Department of Transportation, we are absolutely committed to accountability.
The true meaning of bipartisanship is when the President gives the only Republican in his nominated Cabinet the most amount of money to spend in the recovery program.
They may sound like kidding around, but I do not take this responsibility lightly. Not at all.
The American people have put a tremendous amount of trust in their government, and they deserve to see that trust pay dividends in careful, well-documented spending.
That is why I am personally addressing Department of Transportation employees regarding our peculiar responsibility for $48 billion in ARRA funds. While we have always taken our oversight role seriously, now it’s time to kick it up a notch.
And, we have already jumped out in front of this by establishing our TIGER team of leaders across several offices to manage these funds. Their task is to track the money as it is being spent, ensure transparency, and meet all accountability requirements.
I have directed all DOT employees to cooperate fully with that team, and I fully expect they will.
The transparency made possible by recovery.gov provides yet another layer of accountability. So, as we at DOT go about the important business of creating jobs and encouraging economic development around the nation, I expect the American people to hold our feet to the fire.