Take Advantage of the Federal Jobs Plan

Posted on September 6, 2011. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

By Carl Chancellor

While the details of President Obama’s job plan won’t be unveiled until Thursday when he addresses a joint session of Congress, it’s a safe bet that the package will have significant benefits not only for the unemployed but for businesses and private investors as well.

It’s almost certain that the president will push the idea of a national infrastructure bank—which has gained traction on both sides of the political divide—as a means of sparking job creation by rebuilding the nation’s crumbling infrastructure. Both the AFL-CIO and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have endorsed the creation of just such a government-sponsored lending institution that would supplement federal spending on infrastructure by promoting private-sector investment. The private sector currently provides only about 6 percent of infrastructure spending in this country. According to the Associated Press, the United States is one of the few large countries that lack a central source of low-cost financing for construction projects.

Many of our clients are particularly intrigued with the idea of a national infrastructure bank knowing that such a commitment could inspire financial markets and encourage investment. We, at Turner GPA, have been in constant contact with federal lawmakers on both sides of the aisle as they’ve been busy crafting legislation to address the economy and other pressing national issues. Our number one priority is making sure our clients’ voices are being heard on the Hill and that their wishes and concerns are being addressed.

“We’ve got roads and bridges across this country that need to be rebuilt,” said Obama at a Labor Day rally in Detroit. “We’ve got private companies with the equipment and manpower to do the building. We’ve got more than one million unemployed construction workers ready to get dirty right now.”

At that rally the President hinted at some of the other possible elements of his much anticipated jobs plan, including extension of the soon-to-expire payroll tax cuts, extended unemployment benefits, and expanding job training. In addition, it is expected that the President’s jobs plan will offer tax credits to companies that hire new workers; push for the ratification of free-trade deals; address reforms to parts of the tax code; and, will speak to federal regulatory concerns.

At a time when unemployment tops 9 percent and some 14 million Americans are out of work, voters who are clearly disenchanted with the White House and Congress are looking for a bold plan to jump start a stalled economy that created no new jobs in August.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, (R-Virginia) has indicated that there could be support for portions of the president’s jobs bill like tax and regulatory reform and free trade. However, Congressional Republicans are sure to balk at any major new public works plan.

Still, it is worth mentioning, as many political pundits already have, that a national infrastructure bank encompasses two of the GOP’s favorite notions–privatization and the elimination of earmarks.

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