Jobs Bill = [some] jobs

| March 29, 2010

Infrastructure spending = jobs.

Why is this simple equation not fully understood in Washington? Maybe it is understood but not accepted. Sometimes its possible to see Congress as a group of people standing out in the rain arguing about the best way to raise the umbrella.

The jobs bill will create jobs, even its critics concede it. But how many is one key question. Another is whether a better bill — in fact one that existed before it got shredded and pasted back together — would create far more jobs. The key to the second argument is that infrastructure spending is a proven job creator, and it almost got the chance to prove it, big time.

 New America Foundation Analyst Samuel Sherraden says the bill was stripped of infrastructure investment to the point where it will create far, far fewer jobs than it might have.  An effective original plan to use infrastructure spending to create jobs was watered down to allow far less efficient tax credits according to Sherraden, who writes in a CNN opinion piece.

According to a recent study by the Milken Institute, every $1 billion in infrastructure investments will create 25,000 jobs. By these estimates, an infrastructure package of $300 billion would create 7.5 million jobs, far surpassing the Senate’s tax credit in terms of number of jobs created for the buck.

Read Sherraden’s opinion here. Check out the Milken Institute and its report here, and see what the New America Foundation is here.

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