Stimulus is Funding the Status Quo in California

While high speed rail and smart grid technology were used to sell the idea of the economic stimulus package, the majority of stimulus money in California is being spent on routine projects, according to new figures.
August 22, 2009, 1pm PDT | Nate Berg
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Some argue that these standard projects would have been paid for anyway, and that diverting stimulus money towards them is delaying the implementation of those larger-scheme projects touted earlier this year.

"In fact, much of the stimulus money earmarked for California so far has gone toward run-of-the-mill projects such as replacing a metal guardrail with a concrete one in the city of Orange and conducting a campus-wide elevator study at the Department of Veterans Affairs Hospital in San Francisco.

Federal officials defend the expenditures, saying they wanted to emphasize "shovel-ready" projects that would get people working. California had one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation in June at 11.6%, and economists anticipate it to remain in the same ballpark when the latest numbers are released today."

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Published on Friday, August 21, 2009 in Los Angeles Times
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