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How the stimulus package will help Maine

Direct from the White House Media Affairs Office, here's a breakdown of how the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan will help Maine. I'll have more on this later, after a 2pm press conference call with Larry Summers.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan is a nationwide effort to create jobs, jumpstart growth and transform our economy for the 21st century. Across the country, this plan will help businesses create jobs and families afford their bills while laying a foundation for future economic growth in key areas like health care, clean energy, education and a 21st century infrastructure. In Maine, this plan will deliver immediate, tangible impacts, including:

 ·         Creating or saving 16,300 jobs over the next two years. Jobs created will be in a range of industries from clean energy to health care, with over 90% in the private sector. [Source: White House Estimate based on Romer and Bernstein, “The Job Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan.” January 9, 2009.]

 ·         Providing a making work pay tax cut of up to $1,000 for 550,000 workers and their families. The plan will make a down payment on the President’s Making Work Pay tax cut for 95% of workers and their families, designed to pay out immediately into workers’ paychecks. [Source: White House Estimate based on IRS Statistics of Income]

 ·         Making 17,000 families eligible for a new American Opportunity Tax Credit to make college affordable. By creating a new $2,500 partially refundable tax credit for four years of college, this plan will give 3.8 million families nationwide – and 17,000 families in Maine – new assistance to put college within their reach. [Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities analysis of U.S. Census data]

 ·         Offering an additional $100 per month in unemployment insurance benefits to 71,000 workers in Maine who have lost their jobs in this recession, and providing extended unemployment benefits to an additional 12,000 laid-off workers. [Source: National Employment Law Project]   

 ·         Providing funding sufficient to modernize at least 38 schools in Maine so our children have the labs, classrooms and libraries they need to compete in the 21st century economy. [Source: White House Estimate]

 In addition to this immediate assistance for Maine, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan will help transform our economy by:

 ·         Doubling renewable energy generating capacity over three years, creating enough renewable energy to power 6 million American homes.

 ·         Computerizing every American’s health record in five years, reducing medical errors and saving billions of dollars in health care costs.

 ·         Launching the most ambitious school modernization program on record, sufficient to upgrade 10,000 schools.

·         Enacting the largest investment increase in our nation’s roads, bridges and mass transit systems since the creation of the national highway system in the 1950s.

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