updated: 1/30/2009 8:19:10 AM
Governor Mitch Daniels says any federal stimulus money that comes to Indiana will help keep Hoosiers working and quickly create more jobs. Daniels says Indiana could receive up to $5 billion and adds the package is designed for states with far worse financial situations.
Source: Inside INdiana Business
INDIANAPOLIS (January 29, 2009) – Governor Mitch Daniels today said the goal for federal economic stimulus funds that come to Indiana will be to keep and put more Hoosiers to work and do it quickly.
“Our goal is to be out of the gate as fast as any state to obligate the funds and get projects started,” said Daniels.
On Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives approved its version of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, better known as the federal economic stimulus bill. Daniels said Indiana could receive $4 billion to $5 billion according to a preliminary analysis of the bill. Daniels said the stimulus package is designed for states that have far worse financial worries than Indiana, so he will urge that funds be spent for one-time projects that don’t increase the state’s budget base to a level that cannot be maintained when the stimulus payments cease.
“It is one-time money, and it must be used for one-time purposes. There is an enormous danger of building a cliff if we allow this to come into the ongoing base of state government,” said Daniels. “In two years when it’s not there anymore, we would have to make massive cuts in order to make ends meet.”
The governor said the state will have transportation and other projects ready to go as soon as the stimulus bill becomes law.
“Our intention is to be as smart as possible in making sure these dollars go straight to jobs, not someone’s political pet project, and not to something that is not related to economic growth, and to move very fast,” said Daniels, who has begun to meet with state legislative leaders. “This cannot be a giant cookie jar for people’s long-cherished wish lists. We want to try to make sure every dollar goes to strengthening the Indiana economy, and goes as quickly as possible.”
Of the $5 billion expected to come to Indiana, $1.5 billion to $2 billion will be for capital projects. Categories and approximate amounts Indiana could receive are:
$750 million for roads and bridges
$100 million for mass transit
$250 million for K-12 renovation, repair and lab space
$130 million for higher education building
$150 million for clean water projects
$150 million for weatherization
$100 million for energy efficiency
In addition, more than $1 billion from economic stimulus funds are likely to go directly to Indiana K-12 schools. The federal government also is expected to make billions of dollars available on a competitive basis to private and public entities. Daniels has assigned Secretary of Commerce Mitch Roob to analyze competitive grant fund opportunities and work with colleges and universities, industry, non-profit entities, business, and others to support those efforts.
Source: Office of the Indiana Governor