GREENSBORO, N.C. – Our news partners at USA Today found the Pentagon plans to destroy more than $1 billion of unused excess ammunition. The stock pile could be everything from bullets for hand guns to high tech missiles. And get this - Congressional and Pentagon sources tell USA Today some of the ammunition could still be usable. Still the Pentagon plans to destroy it. On top of it all, a government spokesperson will not answer 2 Wants To Know why the ammo has to be destroyed.
Taxpayer Slade Morgan says that doesn't seem like common sense to him.
"It's just wasting money," Morgan said.
2 Wants To Know asked taxpayers for their common sense answers to what the government should do with the excess ammunition instead. Answers ranged from hold the ammunition for future use to selling it someone else so the government can make money. Even the twitter world weighed in. George Simmons typed: "Could be donated to local PD's or Highway Patrol's thru out USA for training if nothing else."
Rockingham County Sheriff Sam Page loves that idea. His agency spent $15,000 last year on ammunition.
"I wouldn't turn it down," Page said. "Maybe it would help lower our budgets a little bit."
2 Wants To Know asked a Pentagon spokesperson about these common sense answers several times. They never responded.
All of those ideas of how to use the excess ammo sound great. But a Government Accountability Office audit says something's standing in the way. The military's computer record keeping systems. Each branch has different software. The programs don't share information well. So they don't even know exactly how much ammo they have. And if you don't know what you have, it's tough to sell it or give it away.
Senator Kay Hagan oversees the Pentagon from the Armed Services Committee. She says:
"The Department of Defense is taking steps to improve information sharing among service branches, and I will continue to monitor that process to make sure tax dollars are not being needlessly spent."
Tell us your solution for the excess ammo. Either comment on this story, tweet using #CommonSense or e-mail Ben at firstname.lastname@example.org