According to CNN, the GOP has decided they don’t want the following provisions in the stimulus bill. I’ve added my own remarks.
• $2 billion earmark to re-start FutureGen, a near-zero emissions coal power plant in Illinois that the Department of Energy defunded last year because it said the project was inefficient.
This one, I’ll give them. I’m not convinced that “clean” coal is good for the environment. Now, I’d be willing to change my mind on this if two things: 1) This will create much needed jobs in Illinois and 2) Someone can prove to me that “clean” coal is good for the environment.
• A $246 million tax break for Hollywood movie producers to buy motion picture film.
Well, I’m not too concern with the Hollywood community going out of business when a great number of producers, actors and directors make more for one movie than I will ever see in a lifetime of work. However; movies are probably one of our greatest exports. A movie that bombs here in America is sure to make a fortune in China or Japan or any number of other countries. Keeping Hollywood making money should be something good for all. I would, also, think that since this is a tax cut and Republicans believe that tax cuts are good for the economy they should support this one.
• $650 million for the digital television converter box coupon program.
Why is this a bad idea? If everyone has access to free TV, would it mean we might start paying attention to what goes on in Washington? Seriously, we are 14 days away from the changeover and millions of Americans couldn’t get the coupons because not enough money was put into the program at the start.
• $88 million for the Coast Guard to design a new polar icebreaker (arctic ship).
New ships = people working.
• $448 million for constructing the Department of Homeland Security headquarters.
Construction? Hmmm, my brother “works” in construction — when he’s not laid off because the economy is tanking. If this would put his fellow carpenters to work — provided we only use union carpenters, I’m all for it.
• $248 million for furniture at the new Homeland Security headquarters.
That doesn’t seem excessive, but I think it deserves it’s own bill. This won’t really create jobs.
• $600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees.
So, the Republicans want to give the car companies billions in free money (free to them), but not encourage the development of hybrid vehicles by jump starting the car economy?
• $400 million for the Centers for Disease Control to screen and prevent STD’s.
This ensures that the workers at these centers keep their jobs — can’t imagine why the Republicans don’t like that. Oh, wait, they don’t believe in the prevention of STD’s by anything but abstinence. You know what you call a woman who teaches her daughter abstinence only? GRANDMA!
• $1.4 billion for rural waste disposal programs.
Doesn’t somebody need to be hired to do this? Isn’t this a change, fix to infastructure?
• $125 million for the Washington sewer system.
Ditto for this one.
• $150 million for Smithsonian museum facilities.
I’m all for supporting the Smithsonian, but not in the stimulus package.
• $1 billion for the 2010 Census, which has a projected cost overrun of $3 billion.
Now? Do we need to earmark the money now?
• $75 million for “smoking cessation activities.”
Not a stimulus project
• $200 million for public computer centers at community colleges.
While this won’t create jobs outright, it will help community colleges deal with the new influx of students that need job training.
• $75 million for salaries of employees at the FBI.
Well, is this so they can have raises? I’d like more information, wouldn’t you?
• $25 million for tribal alcohol and substance abuse reduction.
Sorry — good plan, but shouldn’t be part of the stimulus.
• $500 million for flood reduction projects on the Mississippi River.
This SHOULD create jobs and it should stay.
• $10 million to inspect canals in urban areas.
Like I said above, doesn’t somebody need to be hired to do this? Isn’t this a change, fix to infastructure?
• $6 billion to turn federal buildings into “green” buildings.
• $500 million for state and local fire stations.
This will free up a lot of money cities don’t have right now to keep the fire stations manned.
• $650 million for wildland fire management on forest service lands.
Considering the amount of money spent on putting out these fires, a little prevention could go a long way.
• $1.2 billion for “youth activities,” including youth summer job programs.
Hello — youths, jobs. What part of that don’t the Repubs get? Some kids count on summer jobs to help save for college or don’t Republican children need to save for college?
• $88 million for renovating the headquarters of the Public Health Service.
Could this wait? Will this create a job?
• $412 million for CDC buildings and property.
To do what?
• $500 million for building and repairing National Institutes of Health facilities in Bethesda, Maryland.
Someone will need to be hired to do this.
• $160 million for “paid volunteers” at the Corporation for National and Community Service.
We “pay” volunteers?
• $5.5 million for “energy efficiency initiatives” at the Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemetery Administration.
And, this is bad for why?
• $850 million for Amtrak.
We gave billions to the car companies and banks, why not give some to Amtrak?
• $100 million for reducing the hazard of lead-based paint.
Depends on where.
• $75 million to construct a “security training” facility for State Department Security officers when they can be trained at existing facilities of other agencies.
Please this will create jobs and maybe the other facilities are too crowded.
• $110 million to the Farm Service Agency to upgrade computer systems.
Creating jobs. Spending money in the economy. Someone has to fix these computers and/or set up new ones.
• $200 million in funding for the lease of alternative energy vehicles for use on military installations.
And this is a bad thing because why?
Now, that I’ve added my two cents, let me say this, SHUT UP, REPUBLICANS, SHUT UP!!!!
For eight long years, the Republicans have been in charge. They lowered taxes, raised the deficit and started not one but two wars. And, now, they’re not happy and they’re whining about $19 Billion dollars in a $900 Billion package. Granted, there are some points on which I agree with them. This might not be the place for these programs. However; since the last administration gave away $350 Billion dollars of my, my daughter’s, my grandsons’ and my grandson’s grandsons’ money and can’t tell me where it went, I’m not going to quibble over 19 billion.
If this stimulus package works — no one else will quibble either and the Republicans who voted against it will probably be out of a job — like a great many of the rest of us.