State Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) represents parts of four counties: Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Walworth. Her Senate District 28 includes New Berlin, Franklin, Greendale, Hales Corners, Muskego, Waterford, Big Bend, the town of Vernon and parts of Greenfield, East Troy, and Mukwonago. Senator Lazich has been in the Legislature for more than a decade. She considers herself a tireless crusader for lower taxes, reduced spending and smaller government.
It is officially called the “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.” You know it better as the economic stimulus package.
Washingtonwatch.com reports, “The bill’s reported tally of $825 billion in spending works out to about $8,800 per U.S. family, or $2,800 per person in the United States.”
Just what is all in the spending package? Here is the entire proposal.
The latest news reports indicate Congress is poised to approve the $825 billion stimulus package. Some see the package as the savior for state governments suffering from massive deficits. That won’t be the case.
CNNMoney.com reports that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) this month forecast the cumulative deficits in all 50 states totaling $131 billion for 2009 with an additional cumulative deficit of $181 billion for 2010 for a total $312 billion.
The left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities paints an even grimmer picture reporting, “State deficits are projected to equal $350 billion over the next 30 months.” The same Washington D.C. group says a stimulus package would fail to come close to resolving the budget woes of the states.
“The amount of funding that would go to states to help them maintain current activities is approximately $150 billion to $155 billion — or roughly 40 percent to 45 percent of projected state deficits. Most of this money is in the form of increased Medicaid funding plus portions of a ‘Fiscal Stabilization Fund.’ This funding would likely be sufficient to deter many states from making the most severe spending cuts and to moderate state tax and fee increases. But states would still have very large gaps to close on their own,” says the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
About half of any stimulus money sent to a state, Wisconsin for example, could not be used to fix a large budget hole. If the current projections are correct, that the cumulative deficit of the states ranges between $312 and $350 billion, the stimulus package approved by Congress would still leave the states with total deficits between $162 and $200 billion to fill on their own.
Wisconsin Governor Doyle is one of three Democrat governors asking Congress for a $1 trillion stimulus package.
Read more in Stateline.