Thursday, April 16, 2009

Obama Stimulus Watch - What's in the Plan?

The 2009 Obama Stimulus Plan is estimated to cost more than the Vietnam War with figures adjusted for inflation. You have most likely heard about the Stimulus Plan but you may not know exactly what is in it. That's understandable because congress doesn't appear to know either.

What Will the Obama Stimulus Plan Cost?

Currently, the plan includes $550 billion in new spending and $275 billion in tax relief for a total of $825 billion. Are you having trouble wrapping your brain around numbers this big? If you wanted to count to 1 billion, it would take 95 years. If you wanted a bowl large enough to hold 1 billion goldfish, it would be as large as a stadium.

What's in the Obama Stimulus Plan?

$100 billion for clean energy initiatives. These include ethanol, wind energy and, solar energy to name a few.

Expand the child tax credit for 6 million families

Double renewable energy over next 3 years. Obama wants to power 6 million homes with renewable energy in 3 years.

Expand COBRA. (The healthcare option for those recently unemployed)

$27 billion to continue the extended unemployment benefits program through Dec. 31; and another $9 billion to increase the average unemployment check by $25.

"Shovel Ready" projects. Enhancing security at 90 major ports, 1,300 waterway modernization projects, 380 drinking-water projects, and 1,000 rural water and sewer system projects.
Bridges, roads, and mass transit improvements

Renovate 10,000 schools and fund the shortfall in Pell grants, which would increase college affordability for 7 million students.

Lay more than 3,000 miles of electric transmission lines and install 40 million "smart" utility meters to control energy use in homes.

Weatherize at least 2 million homes and 75 percent of federal buildings.

$90 billion to increase the federal share of Medicaid payments and an additional $79 billion to help states avoid cutbacks in education and other services.

Incentives for businesses to make capital expenditures. Building new plants and investing in new equipment will result in tax cuts.

Obama aides are also weighing the merits of a "buy American" clause. This would require companies contracted to buy supplies from American companies. For example, steel couldn't come from often cheaper sources overseas.


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