COMBINED INVESTMENTS: AMERICAN RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT & OMNIBUS APPROPRIATIONS
Strengthening Opportunities for American
Workers through Education
A good education is one of the best ways to help both individual Americans and our nation become stronger, and more productive and competitive. Access to a good education should be based on what’s in a student’s heart and mind, not their wallet. To promote our future economic strength and help families ensure a good education for their kids, investments include:
·$53.4 billion to local school districts through Title I ($28 billion), IDEA ($24.5 billion) and the Education Technology program ($920 million).
·$53.6 billion in state fiscal relief to prevent cutbacks to key services, including $39.5 billion to local school districts and public colleges and universities distributed through existing state and federal formulae, $5 billion to states as bonus grants as a reward for meeting key performance measures, and $8.8 billion to states for other high priority needs such as public safety and other critical services, which may include modernization, renovation and repair of public school and college facilities.
·$34.4 billion to help 6.9 million families pay for college through an increase in the Pell Grant. With additional mandatory funding under the College Cost Reduction and Access Act, the maximum Pell Grant will be $5,350 for the next school year, inc
reased $1,300 since 2006.
·$9.2 billion to provide comprehensive Head Start development services to 980,000 low–income children. Only about half of all eligible preschoolers and less than 3 percent of eligible infants and toddlers participate in Head Start.
·$1.1 billion to provide approximately 1.7 million children with quality afterschool services while their parents work.
Strengthening the Economy through Investments in Science and Technology
To ensure that America stays on the cutting-edge, we need to be putting scientists to work looking for the next great discovery, producing new and innovative technologies, and making smart investments that will help businesses in every community succeed in a global economy. Science and technology investments include:
·Over $3.4 billion for science facilities and instrumentation, including $1.8 billion for the National Institutes of Health facilities, $500 million for the National Institute of Standards and Technology; and $500 million for the National Science Foundation, and $600 million for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
·$38.5 billion to help provide over 16,000 new research grants for lifesaving research into diseases such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and diabetes at the National Institutes of Health.
·Nearly $38 billion for scientific research, including $6.8 billion by the Department of Energy, $18.8 billion for NASA and $9 billion for the Natio
nal Science Foundation and $800 million by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and $2.5 billion for agricultural research.
·$7.6 billion for grants and loans to expand broadband internet access so businesses in rural and other underserved areas can link up to the global economy.
Putting People to Work Modernizing Transportation and Water Infrastructure
Our roads, highways, airports, and sewer and water infrastructure are an essential part of our economy and necessary for the creation of good-paying jobs. To meet the demands of a growing nation we must rebuild our crumbling roads, and bridges, modernize public buildings, and put people to work cleaning our air, water and land. Investments include:
·Over $68 billion to improve and repair our nation’s aging highway infrastructure.
·Over $35 billion for clean water, flood control, and environmental restoration investments and $1.9 billion to construct and improve water and waste disposal infrastructure in rural areas and towns.
·Over $29 billion for transit and rail to reduce traffic congestion and gas consumption. Public transportation saves Americans time and money, saving as much as 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline and reducing carbon emissions by 37 million metric tons each year.
·$4.6 billion for Airport Modernization, Safety and Efficiency Grants to ease congestion and prepare our nation’s airports for growing use.
thcare Access and Affordability
It is a moral tragedy that there are over 50 million Americans with no health insurance, and millions more who are one major illness away from bankruptcy. As a nation, we will never get a handle on the federal budget until we get a handle on runaway healthcare costs and address that injustice. To save lives, ease the squeeze on family budgets by reducing costs, and improving our healthcare system, investments include:
·$19.5 billion to jumpstart efforts to computerize health records to cut costs and reduce medical errors.
·$1 billion to fight preventable chronic diseases, the leading cause of deaths in the U.S., and infectious diseases. Preventing disease rather than treating illnesses is the most effective way to reduce healthcare costs. This includes hospital infection prevention, adult and child immunization programs, and evidence-based disease prevention.
·$2.7 billion to provide nearly 19 million Americans access to quality, affordable healthcare at community health centers - expanding access to an additional 1.9 million Americans - and $1.5 billion to help renovate clinics and make health information technology improvements.
·$1.1 billion for healthcare research and quality programs to compare the effectiveness of different medical treatments funded by Medicare, Medicaid, and SCHIP. Finding out what works best and educating patients and doctors will improve treatment.
A·$1 billion to address shortages and prepare our country for universal healthcare by training primary healthcare providers including doctors, dentists, and nurses as well as helping pay medical school expenses for students who agree to practice in underserved communities through the National Health Service Corps.
·$150 million to help states expand health coverage, including $75 million for a new initiative to provide start up grants to states that are ready with plans to expand health care coverage to targeted groups and $75 million for State High Risk Insurance Pools, which provide affordable health insurance to almost 200,000 people who cannot obtain health insurance in the commercial market because they are medically high risk.
·$4.1 billion for the Indian Health Service, which provides comprehensive health service delivery to nearly 2 million Native Americans and Alaska Natives. Native Americans have higher mortality rates, shorter life expectancy rates, and disproportionate disease burdens than the general U.S. population. This funding expands access to health care, particularly in rural areas, and provides critical infrastructure and medical equipment needs.
Keeping Communities Safe
·$7.1 billion for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, including $3.8 billion for national security activities, such as the hiring of 280 new agents and 271 new intelligence analysts, and $3.3 billion for criminal investigations including mortgage fraud.
·$6.5 billion for grants to state and local organizations to fight and prevent crime including Byrne Justice Assistance Grants, Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program, drug courts, and programs for at risk youth and missing or abused children.
·$1.9 billion for the Drug Enforcement Administration to fight illegal drug use, including $73 million to fight meth, especially in targeted “hot spots.”
Attacking the Housing Crisis
·$25.9 billion for Section 8 Housing vouchers to provide housing assistance to 3.2 million individuals and families and to provide 14,000 new, targeted vouchers for disabled persons and homeless veterans during the housing crisis.
·$8 billion for Public Housing Authorities to make critical repairs and improvements to public housing units and improve living conditions for residents, to buy, rehabilitate, and build housing for low income elderly and disabled persons, and to rehabilitate and improve energy efficiency at units maintained by Native American housing programs.
·$2 billion for gap financing to restart low income housing construction stalled during the credit crisis.
·$4.5 billion for the public housing operating fund for maintenance, crime prevention and energy costs.
·$1.5 billion for the Emergency Shelter Grant program to provide short term rental assistance, housing relocation, and stabilization serv
ices for families during the economic crisis.
·$2 billion for the Neighborhood Stabilization program to help communities purchase and rehabilitate foreclosed, vacant properties in order to create more affordable housing and reduce neighborhood blight.
·$1.9 billion for rural housing programs.
·$19.9 billion to provide a 13.6% increase in nutrition assistance to modest-income families and to lift restrictions that limit the amount of time individuals can receive food stamps.
·$7.3 billion for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) to provide proper nutrition to mothers and their children. Rising food costs and the economic downturn are expected to increase participants to 9.1 million Americans in 2009 - 400,000 more than 2008.
·$1.2 billion P.L. 480 International Food Aid and $100 million for the McGovern-Dole program, to address world hunger at a time when rising food costs are creating a global food crisis.