WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator “Big Sister” Gina McCarthy as its March Porker of the Month for her agency’s creepy plan to monitor the hotel shower habits of millions of Americans.
The EPA’s $15,000 grant to the University of Tulsa, under the People, Prosperity and the Planet student design competition for sustainability, “aims to develop a novel low cost wireless device for monitoring water use from hotel guest room showers. This device will be designed to fit most new and existing hotel shower fixtures and will wirelessly transmit hotel guest water usage data to a central hotel accounting system.” The monitoring device will be coupled with a smartphone app that would allow the user to access hotel water usage anytime, anywhere.
Beyond monitoring guests’ shower usage, the EPA has is snooping around other aspects of hotel hygiene and cleanliness. The agency’s WaterSense Challenge program asks hotels to track “water use and upgrade their restrooms with low-flow toilets and showerheads” and “encourages linen and towel reuse programs.”
In response to those that claim the agency is infringing on Americans’ personal hygiene habits, EPA Deputy Press Secretary Laura Allen said, “EPA is not monitoring how much time hotel guests spend in the shower.” And even as the EPA, rather than the private sector, is spending money on this project, Allen assured everyone that, “The marketplace, not EPA, will decide if there is a demand for this type of technology.”
While the shower grant is certainly not the EPA’s most expensive example of government waste, it is both the most recent and extremely obnoxious. The EPA proposed a rule in March, 2014 that would allow the agency to encroach on private property so long as there is any body of water, from a pond to standard runoff. As just one example of how the courts are rejecting the agency’s overreaching regulations, in this case over greenhouse gases, the Supreme Court ruled on June 23, 2014 that the EPA “has no power to ‘tailor’ legislation to bureaucratic policy goals by rewriting unambiguous statutory terms.”
Administrator McCarthy requested a 6 percent budget increase of $452 million in the EPA’s budget for fiscal year 2016. She must feel the agency needs the money to implement the policies contained in the 27,854 pages by which the agency’s regulations have swelled since 2009.
“Even ‘Big Brother’ did not watch what people were doing in the shower,” said CAGW President Tom Schatz. “Travelers already worry about what they will find in hotel bathrooms. Knowing the EPA is observing everything that goes on in such a normally private setting will not assuage their concerns.”
For her agency’s unremitting and intrusive use of taxpayer dollars to intrude on the personal habits of Americans, EPA Administrator “Big Sister” Gina McCarthy is CAGW’s March Porker of the Month.
Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government. Porker of the Month is a dubious honor given to lawmakers, government officials, and political candidates who have shown a blatant disregard for the interests of taxpayers.