Alaska already seeing benefits of stimulus dollars says Senator
September 29, 2009
"Today, when you look at the first quarter results for Alaska, the outcome is better than expected," Begich said. "At the time we were projecting Alaska would receive around $1 billion in funding. Today, more than $1.5 billion has been awarded."
Begich said more than 400 projects in Alaska have been funded and the state leads the nation in per capita funding from ARRA, at more than $2,000 per person. Begich cited projects such money to UAF for a new Arctic research vessel and $150 million the long-overdue hospital replacement in Nome as evidence of success, as well as innumerable smaller projects in communities from Ketchikan to Kodiak and Anchorage to Anvik.
Begich said the benefits have been statewide, from smaller communities like Emmonak and Anvik to the urban areas of KetchikN, Kodiak, Anchorage and Fairbanks.
Other highlights of ARRA funding
for Alaska include:
"Bottom line - is what this means is jobs for Alaskans across the state," Begich said. "We already saw significant construction impact this season and we'll see much more next summer as contracts are awarded this winter."
Begich highlighted other areas of the Recovery Act that have put cash in Alaskans' pockets including the Making Work Pay tax credits which have been accessed by almost 300,000 Alaska families; the $8,000 new home buyer tax credit; and the $250,000 small business tax write-off for capital investments and equipment purchases in 2009.
Begich said almost 30 Alaska small businesses have received Recovery Act loans totaling $10 million to help build their businesses.
"We all know small businesses are the engine of our economy here in Alaska. They have the hardest time when an economy retracts," he said.
The Alaska Status Report also highlights the help for Alaskans to cut energy bills and invest in clean energy. The funding includes:
Begich was the only member of the Alaska delegation who voted for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
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