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News About the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Bloomberg - U.S. Economy: Contraction Eases as Recovery Beckons
The worst U.S. economic slump since the Great Depression abated in the second quarter as government spending programs started to kick in…

Gross domestic product shrank at a better-than-forecast 1 percent annual pace after a 6.4 percent drop the prior three months, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. A survey of purchasing managers showed separately that business contracted less than estimated this month.

Stabilization in homebuilding and the liquidation of unsold goods sets the stage for gains in GDP starting this quarter, analysts said…

Stocks and Treasuries gained and the dollar remained lower against the euro after the report.

The economy was forecast to shrink at a 1.5 percent pace, according to the median estimate of 78 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. [Read More]

Cincinnati Enquirer (Ohio) - Children's Hospital could add 100 jobs
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center probably will hire more than 100 new researchers and staff starting this year, the first wave resulting from at least $8 million in federal stimulus funds.

Children's already has award letters for $6 million of that amount, funding studies of maladies ranging from seizures to aortic valve abnormalities. U.S. Rep. Steve Driehaus, D-Cincinnati, this week announced another $2 million for Children's.

The Children's research unit includes about 3,000 employees now. The hospital overall employs more than 10,000 workers. [Read More]

Dayton Daily News (Ohio) - Ohio Woodlands Job Corps seeks 132 new workers
Taking a page from the 1930s era Civilian Conservation Corps, the Ohio Division of Forestry will hire 132 green-minded workers to help restore state forests as part of the newly created Ohio Woodlands Job Corps.

The program is being made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, as the federal stimulus program is known, and funding of $4.4 million. Those hired will be divided into two groups who will work for six months each, or 1,000 hours, starting Sept. 14.

In addition to being paid a wage, they'll each earn up to $2,300 toward their college education as an affiliate of AmeriCorps. [Read More]

The Sun-Times (Arkansas) - Close to $60 million in unemployment insurance is available in Arkansas
The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services can use the funds to pay unemployment benefits or, if appropriated by the legislature, for administering its unemployment insurance program or delivering employment services.

“Trying to find a job during these difficult economic times continues to be a struggle for some,” said Rep. Marion Berry, who represents Arkansas' 1st Congressional District. “This funding will be a relief for all of those who have exhausted their benefits and will be another resource to help families move forward with their lives.”

“People need help. These stimulus funds will help,” said Rep. Vic Snyder, who represents Arkansas' 2nd Congressional District.

“These tough economic times present a host of challenges for Arkansas' working families, but few are more troubling than losing your job,” said Mike Ross, who represents Arkansas' 4th Congressional District. “These investments are critical when you lose your job through no fault of your own, and I firmly believe we should help Arkansas families who find themselves in this unfortunate situation.” [Read More]

Lawrence Journal-World (Kansas) - Federal stimulus funds already improving Kansas, officials say
Gov. Mark Parkinson said without federal stimulus funds, the state would have had to cut its budget by 20 percent in some areas.

“The Recovery Act has been essential to our state, not only in terms of balancing the budget without demolishing essential state programs, but it's also been important to Kansans who are struggling to get through this national recession,” he said.

Kansas will receive between $1.8 billion and $1.9 billion over three fiscal years under the federal stimulus plan with most of that going to help public schools, to help low-income Kansans get health care, and for higher education, road construction and the unemployed.

… [Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal] Wolin later said at a news conference in Topeka. “The Recovery Act was never meant to fix the economy overnight,” he said. “It will take a while. This is just the beginning.” [Read More] 

Orlando Sentinel (Florida) Lake cities win $1.3 million for cops
'I got goose bumps all over me when I opened the e-mail,' said Mascotte police Chief Steve Allen, whose department won $160,155, enough to fill one of two positions that have been vacant for a year.

Allen said he now won't have to resort to layoffs or service cutbacks to meet his budget.

Federal officials said 66 law-enforcement agencies in Florida will receive grants totaling $87.8million, enough to hire 428 officers. Across the nation, the grants will pay for 4,699 officers, including 881 who were facing layoffs.

In a news release this week, U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Orlando, praised the awards...

'The Recovery Act is all about jobs, jobs, jobs,' Grayson said. 'There are few better places to increase employment right now than in public safety. The brave men and women who were laid off or could not find a job will now be able to feed their families and keep their homes. New officers also mean safer streets for everyone.' [Read More]

WUPW-TV (Ohio) - Toledo awarded $7M for 31 officers
The 31 Toledo police officers expected to return to the force will join 29 Toledo officers who were called back in early June…

U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur , who represents Ohio's 9th District, welcomed the award and said she will continue her efforts to secure additional funding for the cash-strapped city. 

'We are grateful for the fact that the Department of Justice was able to help out the city with the 31 positions,' added … Rep. Kaptur's spokesman…

Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus received funding for 50 officers while Dayton received funding to hire back 21 officers. COPS Grant funding also was granted to Northwest Ohio cities of Elmwood, Fostoria, Lima, and Put-in-Bay.

In Michigan, Detroit received funding for 50 officers while Monroe in Monroe County was awarded $460,000 to fund two officers. [Read More]

Star Tribune (Minnesota) - Worst bridges to get small slice of half-billion in stimulus funds
Minnesota will spend about $50 million in federal stimulus cash to replace, repair or build 80 bridges. A third of those are deemed 'structurally deficient,' meaning significant parts are deteriorated or damaged, though the designation doesn't necessarily mean a bridge is unsafe.

Crumbling bridges were cited in the passage of the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act… most of Minnesota's share is going toward things such as pavement overlays, guardrails and median cables. [Read More]

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