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News About the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Newsday (New York) - Biden touts stimulus spending in NY
Vice President Joe Biden touted the federal government's economic stimulus program Thursday, saying it means jobs, health care, education, and 'building the infrastructure to be able to compete in the 21st century.'

Addressing the crowd before Gov. David Paterson and Biden spoke, [freshman Democratic Rep. Scott] Murphy vowed to work to bring investment and jobs to upstate New York.
Murphy said his district has received $211 million in recovery funding so far, including $41 million to replace outdated water and sewer infrastructure and $41 million for roads and bridges.

'This recovery act money will be critical to help us emerge from this recession and build a long-term base for economic growth,' Murphy said at Shenendehowa High School north of Albany.

Paterson said the Obama administration estimates that New York state will create and retain 215,000 jobs through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

To critics of the stimulus spending, Biden said, 'What would you have done? Would you have done nothing?'

He said the nationwide program was the government's biggest investment in infrastructure since the interstate highway project of the 1950s and is saving 3,000 jobs a day. [Read More]

Forbes - Stimulus Money May Finally Flow To Green Energy
It's been a long time coming, but green energy business are about to get their promised boost from the economic stimulus package that President Obama signed into law in February.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Thursday announced rules that will finally allow developers of wind, solar, biomass and other green energy projects to apply for a total of $3 billion in federal grants to cover upfront project costs. The funding, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, will be critical to boosting the fortunes of limping green industries like wind power, where total installations in 2009 will likely fall 40% below last year as a result of the broad economic downturn.

The Treasury estimates that 5,000 renewable business will partake of its latest offering. [Read More]

The Commercial Appeal (Tennessee) - State officials outline use of stimulus funding
Mississippi officials have told the General Accountability Office they're using stimulus dollars to pay for increased Medicaid rolls, to avoid tuition increases at the University of Mississippi and to get 44 'shovel-ready' road projects under contract.

Mississippi is using $15.9 million in stimulus funding to create 6,000 summer youth jobs, according to information available by June 30.

As of June 25, the Mississippi Department of Transportation had awarded 36 contracts worth $201.2 million and the Office of State Aid Road Construction, which is responsible for secondary roads in the 82 counties, had awarded eight contracts worth $7.2 million. Of the 44 contracts, 25 have construction under way. [Read More] 

The Lamar Ledger (Colorado) - Work to start on U.S. 287
The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) begins another project funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) next week - a nine-mile reconstruction of U.S. 40 & 287 near Boyero.

'The Ports to Plains corridor is critical to businesses, farms and families, and will continue to play a key role in the economic recovery of Southeast Colorado,' said Rep. Betsy Markey. 'Repairing this road will put Coloradans back to work, bring new jobs and make long-term improvements to our infrastructure. This is a great day for Southeast Colorado.'

In all, Colorado will receive more than $400 million for transportation projects and $103 million for transit projects. [Read More]

The Roanoke Times (Virginia) - Stimulus funds will go toward pharmacy in Franklin Co.
A $493,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will provide a new pharmacy for the health center on the Ferrum College campus.

About $4 billion will be available through the federal Department of Commerce and Department of Agriculture, beginning Monday, to localities and businesses interested in expanding broadband accessibility.

'We lose competitive advantage every day that we fall behind on broadband access,' [Rep. Tom Perriello, D-Albemarle County] said in a news release. 'Internet infrastructure is becoming just as critical as telephone lines and interstates for our businesses, our students and our seniors.' [Read More]

The Tampa Tribune (Florida) - Stimulus money reviving high-speed rail project
Florida is considered by some to be a leading candidate for some of the $8 billion that President Barack Obama wants to spend on 10 inter-city, high-speed corridors. The state has already reserved right of way for a rail corridor along Interstate 4 and spent $30 million on environmental studies connected with the project.

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa, supports the project, saying it will create thousands of construction jobs and develop a high-tech corridor connecting Florida's major metro areas.

'I know people wonder about the cost, but look at the many millions it takes to add a lane onto an interstate,' Castor said. 'Here's something that would be sustainable over time and not reliant on the wild swings in the price of gas and oil.' [Read More]

WCBD-TV (South Carolina) - First Stimulus Project Breaks Ground
Charleston officials broke ground Wednesday on the first new local project to be funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, known as the federal stimulus.

[NBM Construction Company] told City Council they will spend about $1.2 million, or 20 percent of the project, on hiring minority contractors.  NBM says there will be at least 150 employees working on construction with about 10 percent new hires.

“This project will help a majority of employees maintain jobs that otherwise would be lost,” says project manager William Danielson. [Read More]

Phoenix Business Journal (Arizona) - Arizona gets $3.2M in stimulus funds for environmental cleanup
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has handed out $3.2 million in stimulus dollars to Arizona for cleanup of petroleum leaks from underground storage tanks.

The funds are part of $197 million appropriated under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to address shovel-ready sites nationwide contaminated by petroleum from leaking underground storage tanks.

The money will be used for overseeing assessment and cleanup of those leaks, or directly paying for assessment and cleanup of leaks from federally regulated tanks. [Read More]

The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio) - Ohio getting stimulus money despite barbs
…The investigative arm of Congress reported yesterday that billions of dollars in federal stimulus funding is on its way to Ohio.

For instance, Ohio thus far has used $711 million in federal stimulus dollars for its Medicaid health-care program for the poor and disabled, the Government Accountability Office's report said.

But the GAO reported that of $935.7 million in highway infrastructure funding that is supposed to go to Ohio, $384 million has been set aside for various projects and, as of June 25, the state had awarded contracts for 52 projects, totaling $92.1 million. [Read More]

The Times-Picayune (Louisiana) - Algiers storage tank to be tested
The federal Environmental Protection Agency has awarded the state $2.68 million under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which state officials say is enough to pay for three underground tank assessments and two cleanups.

[Tim Knight, administrator of DEQ's underground storage tank program,] said that as soon as the state receives the grant money from EPA, it will begin a bidding process for the first assessments, in line with the stimulus program's goal of quickly creating new jobs. [Read More]

Las Vegas Review-Journal (Nevada) - ENERGY PLANS: LV cuts costs, goes greener with aid
Las Vegas spotlighted plans to put solar panels on top of carports at city buildings Wednesday, an $11 million plan funded mostly by federal stimulus money that's projected to cut the city's electrical costs by $300,000 a year when fully in place.

The goal is to start with three sets of panels, paid for by $1.2 million in grants from the stimulus bill -- at the new Stupak Community Center near the Stratosphere, the Las Vegas [Read More]

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