The White House on Tuesday announced the four finalists in the 2012 Securing Americans Value and Efficiency awards.
Acting OMB Director Jeff Zients said the SAVE awards, now in their fourth year, have produced ideas that are saving the federal government hundreds of millions of dollars annually. This year’s finalists submitted ideas to reduce travel costs, encourage digital transcriptions of federal meetings, and post customs documents online. Citizens have until 12 p.m. on Dec. 21 to vote for their favorite idea on the White House’s website. The winner of the competition will pitch the top money-saving idea to President Obama in the Oval Office.
“These ideas alone won’t solve the nation’s long-term fiscal challenges,” Zients said in a statement. “But they are saving hundreds of millions of dollars and represent common-sense steps to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of government and provide a better value to the American people. ”
The annual SAVE awards, started in 2009, call on federal workers to find practical ways to help save budget dollars. OMB Controller Danny Werfel launched this year’s competition in mid-July.Zients said tens of thousands of ideas had been submitted to the OMB during the four years the competition has been running. Previous winning ideas have included lending libraries to help tool sharing at NASA, encouraging employees to read the Federal Register online and finding ways to use medicine more efficiently at the Veterans Affairs Department.