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News About the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Yesterday, Vice President Joe Biden unveiled a new report on the impact of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding for science and technology.  The report finds that Recovery Act investments have been responsible for creating new jobs and have helped to accelerate significant advances in science and technology to keep America competitive in the 21st century economy.  Additionally, the nation is on-track to achieve four major innovation breakthroughs as a result of the investments.

“From the beginning, we have been a nation of discovery and innovation - and today we continue in that tradition as Recovery Act investments pave the way for game-changing breakthroughs in transportation, energy and medical research,” said Vice President Biden.  “We're planting the seeds of innovation, but private companies and the nation's top researchers are helping them grow, launching entire new industries, transforming our economy and creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the process.” [White House, 8/24/10]

The Christian Science Monitor - Economist Zandi: John Boehner 'just wrong' about Obama stimulus

In noting his disagreement with the Republican leader, Zandi said “we would be in a measurably worse place if not for the stimulus. I don't think it is any coincidence that the great recession ended at precisely the same time that the stimulus, and in this case when I say stimulus I am talking about the [American Recovery and Reinvestment Act] ….was providing its maximum economic benefit.” That maximum benefit came in the second and third quarter of 2009, Zandi said.

If we had not had the stimulus, estimates that are put forward for example by the Congressional Budget Office are exactly right. We would have 2-1/2 to 3 million fewer jobs today than we actually have. So employment - payroll employment - is off 8 million jobs from the peak. If we had not had the stimulus we would be off by about 11 million jobs,” Zandi said.

Rather than a national unemployment rate of 9.5 percent, “we would have an 11.5 percent unemployment rate,” he added.  [8/25/10]

The Washington Times - Md., D.C. win 'Race to the Top' schools grants

Nine states and the District of Columbia will get money to reform schools in the second round of the $4.35 billion 'Race to the Top' grant competition, the U.S. Education Department said Tuesday.

Maryland, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island and the District of Columbia will receive the grants, department spokesman Justin Hamilton said.

In Washington, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty announced that the city will receive a $75 million grant

Maryland officials announced that the state will receive $250 million, the full amount requested.

The historic 'Race to the Top' program, part of President Obama's economic stimulus plan, rewards states for taking up ambitious changes to improve struggling schools, close the achievement gap and boost graduation rates. [8/24/10]

Las Vegas Review-Journal (Nevada) - Nevada lands $7 million U.S. grant to assist in weatherization programs

[MEMBER MENTIONED: Dina Titus (NV-3)]

The federal government on Tuesday announced that it awarded $7 million grant under the stimulus program to Nevada for weatherization program.

Nevada weatherized 4,000 homes as of July with $37.3 million in federal stimulus funds earlier, according to Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev. That program created 80 jobs in Nevada.

The $7 million in additional money will go to weatherization agencies in Las Vegas. Local grants were part of $120 million in awards nationally.

'As a result of funds from the (stimulus) act, thousands of Nevadans are playing less for their energy bills at a time when saving every dollar counts,' Titus said in a statement.

According to a statement from the Department of Energy, the Weatherization Assistance Program is now weatherizing approximately 25,000 homes in the U.S. per month. In June, states reported that nearly 31,800 homes were weatherized with Recovery Act funding -- the most ever in a month. [8/25/10]

Michigan Radio - Federal money helping expand Michigan's fiber-optic network

[MEMBER MENTIONED: John Dingell (MI-15)]

Michigan has been awarded more than a hundred million dollars in federal stimulus funds to expand broadband internet to more parts of the state.

The grants to construct fiber-optic trunk lines throughout Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula are in addition to federal money awarded earlier this year to extend broadband internet through the Lower Peninsula.

Congressman John Dingell says it's important to expand high-speed internet access to all corners of the state, urban and rural.

'And this is absolutely critical to this state modernizing its economy and competing in the 21st century,' says Dingell. [8/24/10]

St. Louis Public Radio (Missouri) - Granite City port to expand operations [MEMBER MENTIONED: Jerry Costello (IL-12)]

The Metro East is the recipient of $6 million in federal stimulus funding for upgrades to a barge and freight port.

The $6 million will fund a new railway spur, linking business and freight terminals to a soon-to-be-built barge harbor.

Illinois Congressman Jerry Costello says the money will help boost the region's export capacity by allowing for more barge and river traffic.

'This $6 million puts us a step closer to making the improvements to this facility and building the harbor,' said Costello. 'It's a win-win for everyone. It's a major investment in economic development.' [8/23/10]

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