Monday, February 16, 2009

A Hint To Tennessee: Take The Money

I know enough about economics to know we won't see good growth for a long while. But I am happy to see more and more attention being paid to how American business and government operate. As R. Neal wrote this weekend:

Has anyone else noticed the dramatic and abrupt change in our national debate?

.... Republicans are now running around with their hair on fire freaking out about federal spending on jobs, health care, education, infrastructure, technology, energy independence, health insurance for disadvantaged children, and keeping people in their homes.

Maybe it’s just me, but the latter seems more like the debate we should be having.

And President Obama has only been in office for 25 days."

If the state wants to get a nice hefty chunk of 'stimulus' dollars, I'd suggest emphasizing the huge potentials for growth and the immediate needs of energy and education and jobs and healthcare. Because that is where the money is headed.

Medicaid: $1.62 billion.

Education: $791 million.

Highways and bridges: $593 million.

Special education: $243 million.

Title I education: $225 million.

General purpose: $171 million.

Weatherizing homes: $97 million.

Transit capital grants: $91 million.

Criminal justice grants: $74 million.

Public housing capital fund: $65 million.

Clean water projects: $58 million.

Child care: $42 million.

Dislocated workers: $28 million.

Youth job training: $25 million.

Homelessness prevention: $20 million.

Drinking water projects: $20 million.

Community services: $20 million.

Head Start: $14 million.

Education tech: $12 million.

Vocational rehab: $12 million.

Adult job training: $11 million.

Unemployment insurance administration: $9.6 million.

Employment service: $7.4 million.

Elderly nutrition: $2.6 million.

Food assistance: $2 million.

Emergency Food and Shelter: $2 million.

Now is the only time on this plan - if projects aren't up and running in the next 6 months, then those dollars start going to other states. Or will elected officials just keep bickering and fighting with each other instead?

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