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Caution -- Stimulus Package Not a Sure Thing

February 1, 2009 - Joselyn King
This week in his State of the State address, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland called for program reductions of 10 to 20 percent as a way of helping Ohio out of a $7.3 billion deficit.

He acknowledged his proposed cuts would have been more had he not leveraged the $3.2 billion he expects Ohio will get from the economic stimulus package presently before Congress.

Perhaps not so fast, Gov. Strickland.

Ohio, like many other government entities, sees dollar signs when it looks toward Washington and the stimulus package. That money is already being encumbered in fiscal budgets.

But are governments really certain they are getting that money? Instead of money for coal research, is their instead going to be coal in their stockings?

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday that Senate Republicans may seek to block the stimulus package if it isn't stripped of unnecessary spending. Now estimated at about $900 billion, it is estimated the cost of the stimulus could exceed $1 trillion.

Then there would have to be a compromised bill between the Senate bill and the $850 billion stimulus legislation already passed by the House. What do you think? Can they top $1.5 trillion? About $2 billion. Money is just paper. It grows on trees.

And just what happens to the economy if a fragmented Congress stalls on finding a solution to the nation's and world's economic woes.


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