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Rhode Island Construction Jobs Should be Focus of Stimulus

Posted on February 9, 2009

President Barack Obama‘s pending stimulus should focus more on creating Rhode Island construction jobs.

Gov. Donald L. Carcieri recently sent a letter to Obama and Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel requesting revisions to the current stimulus package, which would help create jobs and improve consumer confidence. The stimulus has already been passed by the House of Representatives.

According to a press release from the State of Rhode Island, Carcieri feels the stimulus is “deeply flawed” and has “enormous amounts of spending that have little to do with economic stimulus” and that it “will not produce immediate job growth,” especially for jobs in Rhode Island. Carcieri thinks the federal government should focus more on creating jobs immediately, especially construction jobs, and letting the American people keep more of their hard-earned money.

Carcieri is proposing that the stimulus:

  • provide relief for those families that have been affected by unemployment
  • provide assistance to state government budgets to avoid tax increases at the local level
  • provide massive tax reductions across the board by lowering tax withholding rates and putting more disposable income in weekly family paychecks
  • provide financing for highway and bridge upgrades
  • stabilize the banking and credit system with low interest rates and absorption of the toxic assets

“These steps will restore confidence on the part of all Americans, and hopefully, stop the slide in home prices,” Carcieri wrote in the letter. “Both of these will lead to the resumption of more normal spending behavior by our citizens, once again providing customers for business. This will be the real engine for job growth.”

Carcieri also recognized the high points of the current stimulus as it stands, including 70 percent for fiscal stabilization, Medicaid and infrastructure. However, he suggested the government redirect the other 30 percent for other spending to lower individual tax withholdings.

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