Obama plans new stimulus to tune of $50 billion

President Barack Obama proposed a six-year plan to rebuild infrastructure with a $50 billion investment and prepared new business tax cuts.

“We are going to rebuild 150,000 miles of our roads — that’s enough to circle the world six times. … We’re going to lay and maintain 4,000 miles of our railways — enough to stretch coast-to-coast,” Obama told a labor rally in Milwaukee where several thousand supporters cheered his every line.

The infrastructure plan received immediate criticism from Republicans. Obama is under pressure to do more to create jobs and bring down the stubbornly high 9.6 percent unemployment rate, even as economists agree he has few good options left.

An administration official said Obama will propose on Wednesday in Cleveland that businesses be allowed to write off all their new investments in plant and equipment through 2011.

The plan would cut business taxes by some $200 billion over two years, the official said. The administration hope is that businesses worried about the sagging U.S. economy will nonetheless want to take advantage of the tax break by going ahead with plans for plant and equipment investments.

Obama will also announce on Wednesday a proposal for the U.S. Congress to increase and permanently extend a tax credit for business research and development. It would cost $100 billion over 10 years.

Economists are skeptical any measures Obama takes now will make a swift difference in the $13.2 trillion U.S. economy. They point out that investments in infrastructure, for example, typically do not stimulate the economy quickly.

While Obama declared some jobs would be created immediately by the infrastructure overhaul, a senior administration official told reporters the plan would not create jobs until 2011.

“This is not a stimulus, immediate-jobs plan,” the official said.

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Posted on September 7, 2010, in Newspaper & Journal Articles, Politics & The Economy and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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