Republicans listed what they thought was “wasteful spending” in the stimulus bill currently being debated. Here’s their logic:
• $2 billion earmark to re-start FutureGen, a near-zero emissions coal power plant in Illinois that the Department of Energy defunded last year because it said the project was inefficient.
If the Dept. of Energy labels anything “inefficient” it probably is.
• A $246 million tax break for Hollywood movie producers to buy motion picture film.
I don’t get it either.
• $650 million for the digital television converter box coupon program.
I didn’t get a coupon, did you? Oh wait. I don’t need one.
• $88 million for the Coast Guard to design a new polar icebreaker (arctic ship).
Manufacturing creates jobs.
• $448 million for constructing the Department of Homeland Security headquarters.
Again, construction creates jobs. It’s stimulus.
• $248 million for furniture at the new Homeland Security headquarters.
• $600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees.
Uh, hell no.
• $400 million for the Centers for Disease Control to screen and prevent STD’s.
• $1.4 billion for rural waste disposal programs.
• $125 million for the Washington sewer system.
• $150 million for Smithsonian museum facilities.
I don’t see how this is creating jobs. Sounds like stimulus for inside the beltway to me.
• $1 billion for the 2010 Census, which has a projected cost overrun of $3 billion.
• $75 million for “smoking cessation activities.”
Will save on health costs. Should be included.
• $200 million for public computer centers at community colleges.
Not a bad idea.
• $75 million for salaries of employees at the FBI.
• $25 million for tribal alcohol and substance abuse reduction.
• $500 million for flood reduction projects on the Mississippi River.
• $10 million to inspect canals in urban areas.
• $6 billion to turn federal buildings into “green” buildings.
• $500 million for state and local fire stations.
• $650 million for wildland fire management on forest service lands.
If you live in CA this would be a plus.
• $1.2 billion for “youth activities,” including youth summer job programs.
• $88 million for renovating the headquarters of the Public Health Service.
• $412 million for CDC buildings and property.
• $500 million for building and repairing National Institutes of Health facilities in Bethesda, Maryland.
A half a billion dollars for “repairs”? Seriously?
• $160 million for “paid volunteers” at the Corporation for National and Community Service.
• $5.5 million for “energy efficiency initiatives” at the Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemetery Administration.
• $850 million for Amtrak.
Long overdue. We need to upgrade our rail systems now.
• $100 million for reducing the hazard of lead-based paint.
• $75 million to construct a “security training” facility for State Department Security officers when they can be trained at existing facilities of other agencies.
• $110 million to the Farm Service Agency to upgrade computer systems.
So they can disburse those subsidies to millionaires and corporate farms more efficiently.
• $200 million in funding for the lease of alternative energy vehicles for use on military installations.
Because every man in uniform wants to drive a Prius.