NRSC - Hodes' Massive 'Stimulus' Bill Funds State Government in New Hampshire

WASHINGTON – Despite the Democrats’ claims that the so-called $787 billion “stimulus” legislation would jumpstart the economy in New Hampshire, the Nashua Telegraph reports today that the funds actually “created or saved 796 jobs, with 700 of those state workers.”


In February, U.S. Rep. Paul Hodes (D-NH) voted in favor of the Democrats’ massive “stimulus” bill, which he promised would “reduce soaring unemployment.” Unfortunately, the money allotted to New Hampshire has grown the size of government instead of returning to small businesses to continue investing in the ailing state economy.


Nearly two weeks ago, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that the federal deficit in July 2009 increased by an additional $181 billion, leaving the country $1.3 trillion in debt. A massive portion of this debt comes from the “stimulus” bill, which the Obama Administration claimed would “jumpstart growth and transform our economy.”


“Paul Hodes’ support for more bloated spending in Washington has grown our national deficit and continues to demonstrate that he’s completely out-of-step with the fiscally-responsible values of Granite State voters,” said National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) spokeswoman Amber Wilkerson.


“The people of New Hampshire are looking to elect a U.S. Senator who will safeguard, not recklessly spend, their hard-earned tax dollars. Unfortunately, Paul Hodes rubberstamp record in Washington demonstrates that he has embraced the opposite approach alongside Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid,” Wilkerson concluded.


According to the Union Leader, $3 million in stimulus funds being given to the University of New Hampshire will not be used to rehire employees terminated in June. In Manchester, the Union Leader reported that $22,157 of stimulus funds were used to purchase a new SUV to replace a functional car. And ABC News reported that road signs touting “stimulus” projects in the state cost $500 each.


Background Information


Congressman Paul Hodes (D-NH) Said The “Stimulus” Would “Reduce Soaring Unemployment.” (Travis Andersen, “Hodes Says Stimulus Will Help,” The Nashua [NH] Telegraph, 1/27/09)


The Obama Administration Claimed The “Stimulus” Bill Would “Jumpstart Growth And Transform Our Economy.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: State-By-State Jobs Impact,” The White House, 2/13/09)


$3 Million In Stimulus Funds Being Given To The University Of New Hampshire Will Not Be Used To Rehire Employees Terminated In June. “Hopes that federal stimulus money would help restore cuts at the University of New Hampshire appear to be dashed after officials announced this week they will get $3 million, but none of the money will be used to rehire employees terminated in June.” (Clynton Namuo, “Federal Stimulus Money Will Not Restore Jobs At UNH,” The [Manchester, NH] Union Leader, 7/10/09)


Despite Four Years Of Dropping Home Prices In New Hampshire, $8.3 Million In Stimulus Funds Is Being Used To Build Lower-Priced Housing. “Home prices in New Hampshire have dropped for four years straight, according to the New Hampshire Association of Realtors. And the drop has been big. The median home price in the first five months of 2008 was $237,000. The median price in the first five months of this year: $200,000. That’s a 16 percent reduction. Housing has suddenly become vastly more affordable in New Hampshire. Now, enter the federal government. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen announced last week that through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the stimulus bill), New Hampshire has received $8.3 million ‘to jumpstart affordable housing projects across the state and create jobs.’ Genius. In the midst of a years-long decline in home prices, Washington gives us $8 million to reduce home prices. Even better, people struggling to sell their homes will now have to compete with federally subsidized housing projects. There is little demand for housing construction, and thus construction jobs. So Washington’s answer is to invent demand where there is none. Who cares if the new ‘affordable’ homes stay empty? The point is to ‘create jobs.’ That’s exactly the sort of make-work project we were assured the stimulus bill would not fund.” (Editorial, “Housing Stimulus,” The [Manchester, NH] Union Leader, 7/5/09)


Manchester Used Stimulus Funds To Purchase A New SUV To Replace A Functional Car. “The field supervisor at the Manchester Transit Authority will be driving a new SUV while on the job, thanks to the national economic stimulus program. The MTA is spending $22,157 of the $408,000 it will receive in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds to purchase a six-cylinder, 2009 Ford Explorer, the MTA said last week. The city bus company needs the SUV to transport passengers in case a bus breaks down and to shuttle drivers occasionally during shift changes, said Carey Roessel, MTA executive director. . . . He said the SUV replaces a 1998 Crown Victoria that has 68,275 on the odometer. While the mileage is low, the car has had a lot of use,” Roessel said. (Mark Hayward, “City Transit Agency To Buy SUV With Stimulus Money,” The [Manchester, NH] Union Leader, 5/23/09)


Road Signs Noting “Stimulus” Projects Cost $500 Apiece In New Hampshire. “Signs with the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act logo are plastered at stimulus-funded construction project sites around America. The costs of these signs -- some of them reaching into the thousands of dollars -- are drawing sharp criticism from one member of Congress...The signs cost $500 apiece in Maryland and New Hampshire, $1,700 in Georgia, $2,000 in Pennsylvania and New York, and $3,000 per project in New Jersey. For the price of one $2,000 sign, 40 potholes could be repaired. The costs of the signs are adding up for some states.” (Jonathan Karl, “Expensive Stimulus Road Signs Raise Eyebrows,” ABC News, 7/10/09)