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Teen can save $136 million for government: Results of science fair project

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A teen came up with an idea to save the government $136 million a year and it is as simple as changing the font used in their printed documents. With printer ink costing twice as much as French perfume by volume, this small, but significant change will save millions, according to Canadian Journal on March 29.

Perhaps the most surprising part of this story is that it only took a sixth grade student to figure this out. The government employs folks with all types of degrees to find government waste. This all started when this Pittsburgh sixth grader embarked on a science fair project to find a way to make schools more environmentally friendly.

Besides the tried and true green deed of recycling paper, 14-year-old Suvir Mirchandani found that the Garamond font uses less ink. He wrote a letter to the government offering up his latest findings. He also passed along the estimate of how much the government could save by following through on using this font.

The response that the teen got was at best lukewarm, when a spokesperson dismissed the idea saying the government has cut down on the amount it prints. Apparently the government doesn’t see the millions as a saving, but Suvir does. He still stands with his idea today.

Suvir also calculated the savings for the individual state governments. If they all used the Garamond font, then an additional $234 million could be saved. This is no small change when added to the $136 million that he estimates the federal government could save.

Apparently this fix is just too easy for the government to take on. It doesn’t take any long drawn-out debate or even any special equipment. All they would need to do is make the Garamond font the official government font and with a click of a mouse, the savings begin. Again, it is probably much too easy to do!



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