Press Release

House Passes Troop Funding Plus Jobs Package to Save and Create Jobs

Includes $636 Billion to fund Armed Forces in 2010 and "Jobs Package" to stabilize jobs, expand unemployment insurance and invests in infrastructure

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Washington, December 16, 2009 | Ashley Patterson ((202) 225-1640) | comments
Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) today helped pass vital funding for the nation’s troops in 2010 and a jobs package worth $75 billion to save and create thousands of American jobs. The House passed both bills before adjourning Wednesday to ensure the nation’s military would be adequately funded through next year and to put forth a plan to stimulate the nation’s employment.
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Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) today helped pass vital funding for the nation’s troops in 2010 and a jobs package worth $75 billion to save and create thousands of American jobs. The House passed both bills before adjourning Wednesday to ensure the nation’s military would be adequately funded through next year and to put forth a plan to stimulate the nation’s employment.

“These are critical investments for the nation and this ensures our troops have the equipment they need and makes a plan for further job growth across America,” said Congressman Cuellar. “Employment is the center of our economic rebound from this recession. If we save jobs, if we create jobs, we stabilize the successes we’ve made and stimulate more economic growth.”

The “Jobs for Main Street Act of 2010” plans to invest $48 billion in public infrastructure projects to spawn immediate job creation at the state and local level, in addition to redirecting $26 billion worth of Wall Street bank “bailout” funds towards education, first responder and public service jobs.

The bill also provides emergency economic relief for families hard-hit by the economic crisis by extending unemployment insurance for an additional six months and COBRA health insurance benefits from nine to 15 months for unemployed workers.

An additional $300 million would help keep Americans eligible for the food stamp program in 2010, and $23 billion will extend a higher federal match program which repays doctors who provide services to low-income families under Medicaid through June 2011.

“This is real life relief for Americans who’ve been hard hit by this economic crisis,” said Congressman Cuellar. “This jobs package saves jobs, creates jobs and helps those Americans who’ve lost their jobs this year.”

The “Jobs Package” aims to redirect $75 billion worth of Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) savings from Wall Street to Main Street, to help stabilize the state of the job market. This November the nation shed 11,000 jobs compared to a loss of 111,000 jobs this October.

The House passed the “Jobs Package” by a vote of 217 to 212 Wednesday and if passed by the Senate and signed by the President the bill would become law.

The House also passed Wednesday the Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Appropriations Act, a bill which includes a 3.4 percent military raise for the troops, plus $29 billion worth of military medical care funding. The bill also includes an additional $154 billion for military readiness and training.

Over $104 billion will be invested in improving military equipment, including 353 new ground troop vehicles, 10 additional Air Force cargo aircraft, $3.3 billion to improve fleet helicopters, $15 billion for the procurement of seven Navy ships and $23 billion to reinforce the equipment for the nation’s troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“Our military men and women deserve every dime of this funding which ensures they have the equipment and resources they need,” said Congressman Cuellar. “We’re replenishing our military readiness and strengthening our military capabilities on the ground, in the sky and on the sea.”

This year, Congress added specific provisions to the defense bill to root out waste, fraud and abuse in government contracting. This includes funds to enable defense personnel, not contractors, to perform critical defense functions. The Department of Defense estimates that each job when converted from civilian to federal saves on average $44,000 per year.

In addition, the defense bill makes vital investments for American military families, including $472 million for family advocacy programs, counseling, childcare and outreach support services.

The House passed the Defense Appropriations Bill by a vote of 395 to 34 late Wednesday and it is expected to pass the Senate by the end of the year.

To learn more about the 2010 Defense Appropriations Bill, please visit: http://appropriations.house.gov/pdf/FY2010_Defense_Appropriations_Bill_Summary.pdf

To learn more about the Jobs for Main Street Act of 2010, please visit: http://appropriations.house.gov/pdf/Jobs_for_Main_Street_Act_of_2010_Summary.pdf


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Congressman Henry Cuellar is a member of the U.S. House Homeland Security, Agriculture, and Government Oversight & Reform Committees in the 111th Congress.  Accessibility to constituents, education, health care, economic development, and national security are his priorities. Congressman Cuellar is also a Senior Whip and member of the Blue Dog Coalition.

 
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