Read it and weep:  Here’s What $800 Billion Buys Today

Here’s the good news: The $246 million tax credit to Hollywood that made its way to the initial House bill and was removed in the Senate version didn’t make it to the final bill.

That’s pretty much it for the good news.

Total spending amounts to $792 billion, with $570 billion in direct spending and $212 billion in tax provisions. These numbers don’t include the massive amount of interest that will accrue on the increased debt. If we include that, the total amount comes to $1.14 trillion.

About that all-important infrastructure:

Supporters of the package describe the legislation as transportation and infrastructure investment, the idea being to use new spending to put America back to work while at the same time fixing decrepit infrastructure. However, only 17 percent of the discretionary spending in this package is for infrastructure items. More worrisome still, the final version lacks any mechanism to ensure that spending will be targeted toward infrastructure
projects with high economic returns.

The conference report dedicates 30 percent of all discretionary spending to 33 new programs totaling $95 billion and expands 73 programs which are normally part of the regular appropriations process by $92 billion.

A few, a very few, of the provisions:

# $2 billion to develop advanced batteries for hybrid cars
# $3.4 billion for fossil energy research
# $5.1 billion for environmental cleanup around military bases
# $5.5 billion for “green” federal buildings
# $300 million for “green” cars for federal employees
# $20 million for IT upgrades at the Small Business Administration
# $200 million to design and furnish Department of Homeland Security headquarters
# $98 million earmarked for a polar icebreaker
# $210 million for State and local fire stations
# $125 million to restore trails and abandoned mines
# $146 million for trail maintenance at National Park Service sites
# $140 million for volcano monitoring systems

Overriding Governors:

Perhaps the worst part, however, appears in Section 1607 of the final bill. This section essentially says that if a governor refuses to accept stimulus funds allocated to his or her state, the state legislature can override the governor’s decision by passing a concurrent resolution. It means that governors, such as South Carolina’s Gov. Mark Sanford, who have said that they would not accept the money, could be overridden by their state
legislative bodies.

H/T Riehl World

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