Manzullo Named Top Illinois Member of Congress for Returning Unspent Office Allowance to Taxpayers

From the Campaign to re-elect Rep. Don Manzullo (R., 16th District)…

Manzullo gave back nearly twice as much as Kinzinger his first year

[ROCKFORD] Congressman Don Manzullo (R-IL) was recognized in today’s Chicago Tribune as the top Congressman from Illinois who returned to taxpayers the most money in funds they were allocated to run their offices in Washington, DC and Illinois.

In addition, when comparing the amount of money Members of Congress gave back in their first year in office, Manzullo returned 23 percent of his office allocation in 1993 ($193,000 returned on $850,000 budget) while his opponent, Congressman Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), returned just 12 percent of his office allocation in 2011 ($180,000 returned on $1.44 million budget). Click here to view the complete article.

The Chicago Tribune article, which analyzed office budgets and expenses of all 19 Members of the U.S. House from Illinois, states:

Among House members from Illinois, Don Manzullo, a Republican from Egan, leads the list for watching his office’s bottom line. In his 19 years in Congress, he has left untouched $1.6 million in funds available to run offices in his district, centered in Rockford, and in Washington.

Until recent cuts, the annual allowance has risen steadily. House members from Illinois got an average of $1,429,000 last year. With bills still coming in, Manzullo estimates he won’t spend $105,000 of his 2011 dollars.

“I’m very thrifty,” said Manzullo, who says he shuns mass mailings that others send to constituents using the so-called franking privilege. “We try to run a facility as lean as possible. We shop for rents. We don’t order new furniture. We don’t get the latest in new flat-screen TVs.”

Manzullo has given back money to taxpayers every year he was elected to office. In addition, he has never used taxpayer dollars to send out glossy color newsletters to constituents.

“As a strong fiscal conservative, I feel I must lead by example,” Manzullo said. “When I vote for huge spending cuts to federal programs, I must also do my part by cutting my office expenses. We are all in this together. We all need to tighten our belts if we are ever going to reduce the deficit and start paying down the national debt.”

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