Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Bridging the Gap?

I am just wondering how replacing an old bridge at the cost of $8.5 million is going to stimulate the economy? The project will employ 25-30 people for 1-2 years. Is that stimulation? I thought perhaps it was a major trucking route that has been detoured around in the past and companies could then use the new route to shorten their trip and perhaps pay their truckers more, but it doesn't appear to be so from the reports I have read so far. Yes, the suppliers of the equipment and materials will have some work for a short time, the employees will be paid maybe up to $3 million all together for 2 years of work which they can then use to put back into the economy (only partially of course because union dues and taxes will be taken off). But.. that's about it. By sometime next year the bridge will be finished and then what? Apparently there are a few other plans in the works for that state, using the Stimulus package money - road resurfacing, passing lanes, and other pavement repair. Those are very short term projects and once they are finished, that's it - the money is gone, no more supplies are needed, the road workers are done, the equipment no longer needs to be run... so what's that? $50 million dollars spent on 1-2 years of work for a few hundred people at best in that State.

When I first heard about money being pumped into infrastructure by the billions, that was my reaction - "It only takes a couple of years to build these things, so what happens after that?". Now here is proof - a state proudly announcing it's immediate plan to hire 25-30 people for a job that is projected to be finished sometime in 2010. Is that long-term economic stimulus? It might help if all 30 employees happen to be in the mortgage crisis and this saves their homes, but what are the chances of that? It seems to me that infrastructure like road repairs and bridges are supposed to be covered by the state, not the federal govt. Tax payers in Missouri will be paying for all this twice, don't you think? They have already been paying property and state taxes that are supposed to fund these projects, and now they might well be paying more to cover the Stimulus bill on top. Something is not right here...

Maybe THIS can explain a few things.

1 comment:

  1. I think all these supposed money stimulus projects are short lived, and only going to further spiral the country into a financial quagmire. It is like putting a band aid on a gushing wound. Sew up the wound...Look at the root of the problem not just quick fixes for the sake of the short term problems!

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