Rep. Johnson votes for American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

February 13, 2009
Press Release

“The package, which is a balance of tax cuts and investments, is an effort to help lift our sagging economy and put people back to work,” said Johnson, citing the loss of jobs as his biggest concern. 

Altogether, the plan combines $310 billion in investments for infrastructure, clean energy, transportation, healthcare and schools; $285 billion in tax cuts to individuals and businesses and $192 billion for benefit programs such as unemployment and food stamps.

For low-and-middle income workers it means a $400 payroll tax credit, $800 for couples filing jointly. For workers who lose their jobs, the plan extends middle-class families’ healthcare benefits for nine months. It also will expand the scope of the child tax credit and boost food stamp assistance by $20 billion. 

Under the plan, states would receive about $53.6 billion to avoid further budget cuts, and $40.6 billion would go to schools for construction, renovations and to prevent teacher layoffs. 

As passed, the Act will bring more than $1 billion in infrastructure spending to Georgia, including $931 million for highways and bridges, $136 million for transit, $66 million for clean water projects and $7 million for fixed-guideway modernization.

The plan will save or create about 3.5 million jobs – more than 105,000 in Georgia– and nearly 10,000 in the Fourth District. Locally, funds will be made available to maintain firefighters, police officers, sheriff deputies, teachers and construction workers’ jobs. 

While hopeful, Johnson cautioned that the plan would “not be a cure all” or “solve all our problems.”

“The economic problems weren’t created in a day, and they won’t be solved overnight,” said Johnson.  “But with unemployment in Georgia rising above 8 percent and climbing, I cannot sit idly by while as so many of my fellow Georgians struggle to pay bills, keep their homes or businesses and pay for college.”

For more information on this important legislation, log on to RECOVERY.GOV

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