To: Interested Parties
Fr: White House Communications
Da: April 22, 2009
Re: The Obama-Biden economic plan: creating jobs, strengthening the economy for California families
Facing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, President Obama started his Presidency with decisive action -- proposing and quickly passing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Since the bill went into effect, the ARRA has already helped put money back in the pockets of 95 percent of working Americans, created and saved jobs across the country and made key investments in our community to help kickstart the economy. To ensure that the funds are spent efficiently and effectively, President Obama tasked Vice President Biden with overseeing the implementation of ARRA, and projects have already begun to come in under budget across the country. As the President prepares to introduce the details of his budget and further plans to revitalize the economy, here’s a look at how his policies have impacted California in the first three months of his administration.
IMPACT OF PRESIDENT OBAMA’S ECONOMIC POLICIES ON CALIFORNIA
- Making Work Pay: The President’s tax-cut – which covers more Americans than any in history – is putting more than $6.4 billion back in the pockets of more than 12.6 million hard-working California families.
- $ 220,273,864 to support child care for working families.
- $351,658,900 in block grants to foster energy efficiency in building, transportation, and a wide range of other improvements.
- $185,811,061 to support the weatherization of homes, including adding more insulation, sealing leaks and modernizing heating and air conditioning equipment.
- $226,093,000 to the State Energy Program, available for rebates to consumers for energy saving improvements; development of renewable energy projects; promotion of Energy Star products; efficiency upgrades for state and local government buildings; and other innovative state efforts to help save families money on their energy bills.
- $8,921,033,447 potentially available to California to lay the foundation for a generation of education reform and help save thousands of teaching jobs at risk due to state and local budget cuts.
- $15,600,000 to fund 12 new Community Health Centers, which will serve an estimated 80,890 patients and create a projected 600 jobs.
- $48,088,867 to expand services at 117 existing Community Health Centers, which will expand service to an additional 303,474 patients and create or save a projected 896 jobs.
- $9,827,504 to provide meals to low-income seniors.
- $1,991,907,534 made available in Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) to protect health care for the families hit hard by the economic crisis and some of the nation’s most vulnerable citizens.
- $23,446,251 in vaccines and grants to ensure more underserved Americans receive the vaccines they need.
- $2,569,568,320 in highway funds to help build and repair roads and bridges.
- $1,068,448,693 to repair and build public transportation infrastructure.
- $57,582,000 to address airport safety and security, infrastructure, runway safety, increased capacity, and mitigation of environmental impacts.
- More than $225.3 for state and local law enforcement assistance available through the Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program. The JAG Program supports a variety of efforts such as hiring and support for law enforcement officers; multijurisdictional drug and gang task forces; crime prevention and domestic violence programs; and courts, corrections, treatment, and justice information sharing initiatives.
REAL RESULTS IN CALIFORNIA
Thanks to the Obama Administration’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, real impact is already being felt across the state.
California Governor Announced State Schools Would Receive $3.1 In Stimulus Funding To Preserve Jobs And Programs; State Was The First Approved For Fiscal Stabilization Funds. "California school districts and universities can immediately begin applying for $3.1 billion in federal economic stimulus funds, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced Saturday in Long Beach."This is $3.1 billion coming from the federal government," he said. "This is not the federal government's money, this is the taxpayer's money, so it's going in the right direction -- it's going into the classroom to help our kids, and this is great, great news." The money can be used to minimize layoffs of teachers and other school employees and preserve school programs, he said. Schwarzenegger and the U.S. Department of Education announced Friday that California was the first state to be approved for a share of the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund dollars under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act sought by President Barack Obama." [ABC-7, 4/18/09]
California Governor Appointed Stimulus Watchdog To Make Sure Funds Were Being Spent Responsibly. "Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has appointed an inspector general to act as watchdog over the estimated $50 billion in federal stimulus money to be disbursed to cities and organizations in California. Mr. Schwarzenegger is the first state leader to create such a position. His choice for the job, the Los Angeles controller, Laura Chick, is a Democrat who has caused headaches for city officials and agencies by exposing waste and incompetence and extending her reach across government. Ms. Chick was once threatened with a lawsuit by the Los Angeles city attorney, Rocky Delgadillo, over her decision to audit the work of elected officials, including his, and she caused embarrassment at the Los Angeles Police Department over a backlog of 7,000 rape-kits awaiting testing." [New York Times, 5/4/09]
In CA, "Bids Are Sometimes Close to Half as Much as Public Works Officials Had Projected." "From major highway construction to small sidewalk improvements, bids are sometimes close to half as much as public works officials had projected… When the Santa Clara County Roads & Airports Department recently sought a contractor to do bicycle and pedestrian improvements along three streets, it expected the cost to be about $975,000. The winning offering was just $543,533…On the carpool lane project on Interstate 680 from Fremont to Milpitas, the three contracts awarded last month totaled about $88 million — compared with the $136 million Caltrans anticipated." [San Jose Mercury News, 3/30/09]
California Received Nearly $4 Billion In Stimulus Funding For Schools; Gov. Schwarzengger Vowed to Distribute Funds Quickly to Help Protect Teachers’ Jobs."Education Secretary Arne Duncan on Friday released nearly $4 billion to California, the first state to benefit from a special fund for states that was created by the economic stimulus law. Duncan said the money will ‘save jobs and lay the groundwork for a generation of education reform.’ The fund will replenish state budgets that have been cut or threatened because of the recession. Most of the money is intended for schools, since education accounts for a big share of state spending. President Barack Obama promises it will rescue hundreds of thousands of teaching jobs…Nearly 30,000 teachers in California received layoff notices last month. And Schwarzenegger said he will send the dollars out quickly. ‘We're the first to pass these dollars immediately to local school districts, and we're the first to protect teachers' jobs with Recovery Act dollars,’ Schwarzenegger said in a statement." [AP, 4/17/09]
Stimulus Funding In Santa Cruz Will Help Preserve Jobs And Complete Projects During Multimillion Dollar Budget Cuts. "The city might face a $6.5 million deficit next year, but federal stimulus money could help keep some jobs, as at least $2.3 million is expected to roll into town this year for road repairs, energy conservation and emergency response. ‘It's our intention to use the money as quickly as possible to get people back to work,’ City Councilman Ryan Coonerty said. ‘We worked really hard to put ourselves in a good position to receive the funds, and we think we'll put them to good use.’ Already the federal government has promised Santa Cruz $1.4 million to pave Market Street, Morrissey Boulevard and West Cliff Drive. About $550,000 should pay for energy-efficient lighting, solar-panel projects and other conservation projects. Another $219,000 should pay for roughly two police officers for one year. Those officers might otherwise lose their jobs due to budget cuts, said department spokesman Zach Friend." [San Jose Mercury News, 4/20/09]
Sacramento Business Journal: California School Districts and Universities Are Eligible for $3.1 Billion, Eliminating the Need to Lay Off Teachers, Professors, and Other School District Workers. "The Golden State has been approved for a share of the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund dollars within the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the first state to receive the much-needed money. California school districts and universities are eligible for $3.1 billion, eliminating the need to layoff teachers, professors and other school district workers. ‘These important funds come with significant flexibility that will allow our schools and universities to meet their most critical needs while continuing to improve student performance,’ state education secretary Glen Thomas said. ‘The quick action of the Recovery Task Force means our educators can now begin taking action to protect jobs and programs.’ [Sacramento Business Journal, 4/20/09]
San Joaquin County Will Use a Portion of $9 Million in Stimulus Funding from HUD to "Help Eligible Home Buyers Purchase and Repair Vacant, Foreclosed Homes in the County." "San Joaquin County has received about $9 million in federal stimulus funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to be used, in part, to help eligible home buyers purchase and repair vacant, foreclosed homes in the county. Potential low- to moderate-income home buyers can choose from two dates for the free Neighborhood Stabilization Homebuyers Workshop: next Wednesday and April 29, 7 p.m., at Manteca City Council chambers, 1001 W. Center St." [San Joaquin County Recordnet.com, 4/15/09]
After Her Company Received a Contract for a Stimulus Project, a CA-Based Contractor Said She Will Rehire Most of the Workers That Had Been Laid Off. "It's unclear how many jobs each project is creating, but general contractor Reva Murphy of Livermore, Calif., says the stimulus bill ‘has been a godsend.’ On March 12, her company won a $400,000 stimulus contract to repair roofs at Eldorado National Forest. She will rehire more than 80% of her 26 workers, all of whom had been laid off. ‘Twenty-six families depend on us for a living. We were starving,’ Murphy says." [USA Today, 4/1/09]
Bids for Inland Empire Highway Projects Are Coming in Lower than Estimated, Providing Additional Capacity to Do Other Projects. "If there is a silver lining to the collapse of the Inland construction market, it's that more bids for highway improvement jobs are well below state estimates. With millions of dollars in federal stimulus money heading for construction sites in the Inland area, the low bids might be the up side to a terrible economic time, officials said. When bids come in lower than expected, officials are better able to absorb later cost increases. The extra money can also be used for other road work. ‘When these bids come in lower, it does give us additional capacity to do other projects,’ said Christy Connors, deputy district director for design for the Caltrans office covering Riverside and San Bernardino counties…"[Press-Enterprise, 4/11/09]
Recovery Act Funding Will Help Clean Up Superfund Site Leaking Dangerous Heavy Metals. "From $10 to $25 million in federal economic stimulus money will be used to speed the cleanup and create jobs, at Iron Mountain Mine near Redding. The Environmental Protection Agency announced today that money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will be spent on the mine, said Margot Perez-Sullivan, an EPA spokeswoman. ‘In less than a month, the community will see hundreds of additional green jobs and a greatly accelerated cleanup at Iron Mountain Mine due to this infusion of Recovery Act funding,’ said Laura Yoshii, the EPA’s acting regional administrator for the Pacific Southwest." [Record Searchlight, 4/13/09]
Stimulus Funds Will Allow CA To Train More Nurses for Nonprofit Clinics. "More than 100 California nonprofit clinics that provide services, including dental and health care, have been awarded $48.1 million in federal stimulus money needed to treat an increasing number of uninsured patients. The money comes as community health centers, especially those in underserved areas statewide, expect to treat almost 150,000 new uninsured patients as more people lose jobs and health insurance, California health care advocates say." [Press-Enterprise, 4/14/09]
Mendocino Community Health Clinic Will Receive Over $339,000 In Stimulus Funds To Meet With Rising Operational Costs Caused By The Growing Number Of Uninsured Individuals Seeking Care. "Mendocino Community Health Clinic recently received the first installment of federal stimulus funds diffusing nationwide from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. ARRA funds will help MCHC's centers meet rising operational costs caused by the increased number of uninsured individuals seeking care. As a Federally Qualified Health Center, MCHC became eligible for over $339,000 in ARRA funding…ARRA funding is arriving just in time to assist those losing their insurance as a result of the economic downturn. Mendocino County's rural communities are experiencing rising unemployment; the unemployment rate now tops 11 percent, up from approximately seven percent in the same period last year. The number of uninsured patients being seen at MCHC rose 10 percent from 2007 to 2008; those numbers are expected to rise significantly in 2009…MCHC is a locally governed, nonprofit 501(C)-3 health corporation providing medical care, dentistry, counseling services, women's health and chronic disease management services. Its mission is to provide excellent healthcare services at three locations: In Ukiah, at Hillside Health Center; in Willits, at Little Lake Health Center; in Lakeport, at Lakeside Health center." [The Ukiah Daily Journal, 4/13/09]
Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest Announced Plans To Hire Between 500 And 600 Employees To Work On New Military Construction Projects, Many Of Which Will Be Funded By The Stimulus. "A spike in military construction means the Navy’s building office will hire between 500 and 600 employees in the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30, a command spokesman said April 7. Most jobs will be in San Diego. Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest, which has offices in six states, has hired 200 workers since the start of the fiscal year Oct. 1, and will hire the balance by September. Some 80 percent of those employees will be in San Diego."[San Diego Business Journal, 4/7/09]
California Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Center Received a $1.3 Million Stimulus Grant, Allowing it to Hire 65 Additional Staff and Serve 4,000 Additional Patients Over 2 Years. "Axis Community Health, a community mental health, substance abuse and health education agency, is one of 12 community health centers in California, and 126 nationwide, to qualify for a grant as a "new access point" health center under the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. As a result of its $1.3 million grant, the Pleasanton-based clinic -- which has three sites in Pleasanton and one in Livermore -- expects to hire 65 new staffers, for a total of 175. Over the next two years, Axis officials said, the 37-year-old clinic expects to serve 4,000 additional patients and handle 21,000 additional clinical visits due to the new funding, which is expected to come over a 24-month period." [San Francisco Business Times, 3/3/09]
Because of Stimulus Grant, Sacramento Health Clinic Will Not Have to Lay Off Workers and Will Instead Hire Additional Workers to Expand Services. "The downtown Sacramento clinic The Effort offers health and mental care services to the uninsured and is getting a $1.3 million slice of the stimulus pie. With cash tightening up and demand for their services rising, the clinic was close to laying off workers before the stimulus bill was approved. ‘We will be hiring some people to help expand our services, and we'll be doing that in a matter of weeks,’ said CEO Bob Caulk." [CBS 13 Sacramento, 3/2/09]
Stimulus Looks to Keep Growing Solar Company BrightSource on Track to Build Its First Solar Plant. "BrightSource seemed to be poised to take the next step. It was only a year away from construction on its first 400-megawatt solar plant, called Ivanpah, near the Nevada border. The new facility would provide enough electricity to power 140,000 homes, nearly doubling the capacity of utility-scale solar power production in the United States. Then, suddenly, the economy ground to a halt… When the $787 billion stimulus bill was signed in February, there were more than a few sighs of relief at BrightSource. The bill showered renewable energy with new funds, including $60 billion in loan guarantees for companies building wind and solar plants." [U.S. News and World Report, 3/9/09]
San Francisco Chronicle: "Local Environmental And Agricultural Group, Which Are Often At Odds With Each Other In The State’s Water Debate, Applauded The Federal Government" After Announcement Of $260 Million In Stimulus Funds To Help The State Cope With Drought Conditions. "Cash-strapped California will receive $260 million in federal economic stimulus funds to fix dams, restore fisheries and habitat and help the state cope with drought conditions, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said Wednesday…After three years of less-than-normal rainfall and shrinking snowpack in the state, California officials have made revamping the state's aging water infrastructure one of their top issues. The federal money will pay for shovel-ready projects that had idled as state officials scrambled to find funds. In addition to the $260 million announced Wednesday, California is likely to qualify for much of the $135 million in federal grants set aside for water reuse and recycling projects, Salazar said. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger thanked President Obama for helping secure the federal funds, which will be part of tens of billions of dollars likely to flow to the Golden State as part of the federal economic stimulus package. ‘It symbolizes the (federal government's) intent to be at the table and help us rebuild our infrastructure,’ Schwarzenegger said…Environmental and agricultural groups, which are often at odds with each other in the state's water debate, applauded the federal government for the funds." [San Francisco Chronicle, 4/16/09]
Stimulus Funding For San Gabriel Valley May Save Police Jobs. "As stimulus money trickles out of Washington, D.C., the first few million dollars may save police jobs all over the San Gabriel Valley and surrounding communities. The Obama Administration's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has allocated billions of dollars in federal stimulus money toward hiring new police officers or preventing layoffs, including nearly $3 million for area police departments. Cities strapped by revenue shortfalls are cutting budgets, and police jobs are on the chopping block. The brass at the El Monte Police Department are considering laying off 17 officers. But a few positions could be saved with $320,930 in stimulus money." [Pasadena Star News, 3/10/09]
California’s First Round of Forest Service Stimulus to Bring 70 Jobs to 11 California Counties. "The U.S. Forest Service wasted little time revealing its plan to spend a chunk of the $1.15 billion it is slated to receive from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Chief Abigail Kimbell announced last week that the first group of nationwide forest service projects, totaling $98 million, has been selected and is expected to create 1,500 jobs. The remaining projects, totaling $1.052 billion, are expected to create 23,500 jobs when announced. In California, the first round of projects on lands managed by the forest service will include maintenance and construction on facilities, roads and trails totaling 70 jobs and $7.75 million. The jobs are estimated to last from four months up to a year. These projects will benefit 11 counties. "[Ledger Dispatch, 3/16/09]
California Congressman Calls $540,000 In Recovery Act Funding A "Lifeline" For Police Departments Facing Budget Woes. "The federal economic stimulus package will give four law enforcement agencies in the county nearly $540,000 in grants to hire and retain officers, pay for training or buy equipment. The money, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that was signed into law last month, is completely separate from the agencies' normal annual funding. The stimulus package also includes millions of dollars in competitive grants that police agencies across the nation can apply for. ‘Funds included in the economic stimulus package for law enforcement grants are vitally important as California struggles through its economic woes,’ Rep. Sam Farr, D-Carmel, said. ‘These funds are a lifeline for many of our police departments facing layoffs and other service cutbacks.’"[San Jose Mercury News, 3/15/09]
San Diego’s Camp Pendleton Will Receive $563 Million to Build a New Hospital. "A new naval hospital for Camp Pendleton is among the largest construction projects being funded with the Pentagon's $7.4 billion share of the $787 billion economic stimulus package passed by Congress last month. The 500,000-square-foot hospital will be built on Vandegrift Avenue across from the commissary near the Marine Corps base's Oceanside Gate, said Doug Allen, a hospital spokesman. It will be about 40,000 square feet larger than the current facility, which is in the base's interior near Lake O'Neal, Allen said. That hospital has 72 beds and a staff of about 2,100, and treats 1,850 outpatients per day. The bill allots $563 million for the project, according to information on the Defense Department Web site www.defenselink.mil . Construction is to begin in October 2010 and continue for three years. The hospital is scheduled to open in 2014." [San Diego Union-Tribune, 3/21/09]
$76 Million in Stimulus funds To Help Upgrade Light-Rail Cars, Other Transportation in Sacramento Area. "The Sacramento Area Council of Governments board of directors has voted to disperse another $76 million in federal stimulus funds for transportation projects throughout the region. The funds include $20 million for a track relocation in the downtown railyard, and $8.2 million to retrofit 21 light-rail cars the Sacramento Regional Transit District purchased for 10 cents on the dollar in 2006 from the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority. Other allocations include $3.1 million for a traffic signal upgrade in Sacramento County, and $1.1 million to replace two commuter buses in Placer County." [Sacramento Business Journal, 3/19/09]
Military Families in Monterey County Will Receive $22 Million For Housing, Shops, And Other Facilities; Officials Hope To Use Money To Create Local Jobs, Many Construction-Related. "Monterey County military facilities will get about $22 million as part of the stimulus bill President Obama signed into law last month. Officials said Thursday they hope to create more local jobs - many related to construction. The money will pay for more than 30 projects, according to the Defense Department's expenditure plans for funds it will distribute through the stimulus bill. Camp Roberts, a few miles north of Paso Robles, will receive the largest bulk of the funds: more than $13 million. The Presidio of Monterey follows with $4.8 million, and Fort Hunter Liggett will receive about $2.4 million. An additional $1.5 million will go to the National Guard Field Maintenance Shop based in Salinas near the Salinas Municipal Airport." [Salinas Californian, 3/27/09]